Global chip shortage has reached carmakers' production lines in Slovakia

The Covid-19 pandemic slashed car production by 11 percent last year. A look at more detailed car production statistics from 2020.

Car production in Kia Motors Slovakia in Teplička nad Váhom.Car production in Kia Motors Slovakia in Teplička nad Váhom. (Source: Courtesy of Kia Motors Slovakia)

SkryťRemove ad
Article continues after video advertisement
SkryťRemove ad
Article continues after video advertisement

Three major automotive plants in Slovakia had to partly halt their production this year due to a global scarcity of chips. The Slovak arm of the German carmaker Volkswagen is the latest to have had the problem within the past few months.

The global shortage of semiconductors, absolutely essential components for every car that rolls off the production lines nowadays, is due to several reasons. The Covid-19 pandemic, which hit the Slovak automotive sector quite hard, is one. The Slovak Automotive Industry Association (ZAP) estimated that all four carmakers, whch alongside their suppliers constitute the main pillar of the Slovak economy, manufactured about 11 percent fewer cars than in their record year of 2019.

Related article Drop in car production lower than expected Read more 

“The main reason was the spread of Covid and the subsequent closure of stores and production shutdowns,” Ján Pribula, ZAP secretary general, told The Slovak Spectator. If just one supplier halts its production, the entire supply chain stops, he explained. “The months of March and April 2020 were really critical in this respect.”

Volkswagen Slovakia, Kia Motors Slovakia, Groupe PSA Slovakia, and Jaguar Land Rover together produced 985,000 vehicles in 2020, down from more than 1,100,000 units in 2019. The 11-percent drop, however, is lower than the 20 percent ZAP originally expected.

While the automotive sector recovered relatively quickly from the first pandemic wave in the spring of 2020, the prospects of the sector are mixed, which is currently suffering from the scarcity of semiconductors and the increasing prices on the side of suppliers.

SkryťRemove ad

“Regardless of the obstacles, 2021 will be better than 2020, both in terms of results and turnover,” Ján Čarný, general director of Coface for Slovakia and the Czech Republic, told The Slovak Spectator. “But it is clear that we will not reach the pre-crisis level; the number of cars produced in Slovakia this year will be not affected by demand, but particularly by the decision of groups on where they will allocate scarce chips.”

Čarný expects that the complications associated with the pandemic are likely to be straightened during the summer. Unless new coronavirus mutations with a high level of vaccine resistance appear, the second half of this year is expected to be "relatively normal."

All about chips now

The rest of this article is premium content at Spectator.sk
Subscribe now for full access

I already have subscription - Sign in

Subscription provides you with:
  • Immediate access to all locked articles (premium content) on Spectator.sk
  • Special weekly news summary + an audio recording with a weekly news summary to listen to at your convenience (received on a weekly basis directly to your e-mail)
  • PDF version of the latest issue of our newspaper, The Slovak Spectator, emailed directly to you
  • Access to all premium content on Sme.sk and Korzar.sk

Top stories

Jeremy Hill shows people around Trenčín during a fjúžn walk in 2021

For this American, podcasting became a way to make foreigners in Slovakia visible

Jeremy Hill, an English teacher who lives near Trenčín, came up with the idea of his “Na Slovensku Aj Po Anglicky” podcast during the coronavirus pandemic.


26. jan
Faculty of Management, Comenius University Bratislava

Study program MANAGEMENT in English language

Faculty of Management, Comenius University Bratislava, offers a program Management accredited in the English language.


27. jan
Found stone point

Precious finding near Trnava: 40,000-year-old stone point

The stone points of the spears were inserted into a wooden stick, and the joint could be reinforced with a natural adhesive and organic fiber.


23. jan
The cellar for maturing red wines, built in 2010 with a capacity of 220,000 litres.

Foreigners: Top 10 events in Bratislava

Tips for the top 10 events in the capital between January 26 and February 5, plus regular services in different languages, training, temporary exhibitions and highlights of the year.


26. jan
SkryťClose ad