Automakers are dealing with the double challenge of the microchip shortage and disruption of wire cable harnesses manufactured in Ukraine caused by Russia’s invasion of the country.
Antlitz said individual VW Group plants are continually forced to cancel shifts because the automaker’s supplier in the Ukraine is only operating on a single-shift basis.
“We have set up a crisis team and, in some cases, also shifted volumes to other production facilities of the same suppliers. However, the alternative locations are not intended to replace the production sites in Ukraine in the long term. We stand by our existing supplier sites in Ukraine and provide support where we can,” Antlitz said.
Looming energy crisis
Asked about rising energy costs and the possibility of a ban of imports into Germany of Russian natural gas, Anlitz said the automaker has not yet decided when to implement its plan to convert power plant operations in Wolfsburg from coal to natural gas.
“We haven’t switched over yet. But we are currently in the process of switching over. At the moment, the coal-fired power plant is still running while the gas-fired power plant is ramping up. We are watching very closely what happens in the next few days and weeks. At the moment, we haven’t decided when we will finally shut down the coal-fired power plant.”
Antlitz also reiterated plans for a possible IPO of VW Group’s Porsche’s sports-car subsidiary.
“There has been a lot of speculation there recently about the timing, but we are still aiming for an IPO in the final quarter,” he said.
Reuters contributed to this report