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Shares of Japans major automakers ended mostly higher on Tuesday

March 22/2011

(ICIS) -- Shares of Japans major automakers ended mostly higher on Tuesday amid expectations that their operations would be restarted or ramped up this week after they were halted by the earthquake that struck the country's northeast on 11 March.

Shares of Toyota Motor ended 4.04% higher on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, while Honda Motor rose 2.11%. Nissan Motor, meanwhile, bucked the trend and slipped 0.13% at the close of trading. Mazda Motor was up 4.94%, while Fuji Heavy Industries, the maker of Subaru cars, was 3.19% higher.

These automakers are expected to resume some operations this week after shutting their plants from 14 March because of safety issues in the wake of the 9.0-magnitude earthquake and the tsunami that followed.

On Monday, Nissan restarted the production of parts for overseas manufacturing and repairs at its Oppama, Tochigi, Yokohama, Kyushu and Nissan Shatai plants.

Vehicle production is expected to start on 24 March and will continue while supplies last, the company said in a statement.

Toyota, Japans largest automaker, said on Tuesday it will keep all of its 12 assembly plants in Japan shut at least through 26 March, according to a Reuters report. The company previously said it would keep the plants shut until 22 March.

Many automakers in Japan are facing serious supply disruptions, not only damages to their plants, but also problems such as rolling blackouts, infrastructure damage, port and shipping issues.

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