BMW suspending vehicle exports to Russia
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German carmaker BMW is joining other automakers in halting the export of vehicles to Russia amid its ongoing conflict with Ukraine. It is also suspending local production in the country.
"Due to the current geopolitical situation, we are discontinuing our local production in Russia and export to the Russian market," a BMW spokesperson told FOX Business on Tuesday.
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In 2021, BMW delivered roughly 49,000 units to Russia from all of its markets across the globe.
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Meanwhile, Ford said in a statement it is "deeply concerned about the invasion of Ukraine and the resultant threats to peace and stability" and has suspended its operations in Russia until further notice.
"In recent years, Ford has significantly wound down its Russian operations, which now focus exclusively on commercial van manufacturing and Russian sales through a minority interest in the Sollers Ford joint venture," the company noted. "Given the situation, we have today informed our JV partners that we are suspending our operations in Russia, effective immediately, until further notice."
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While Ford does not have significant operations in Ukraine, it does have a "strong contingent of Ukrainian nationals "working at its facilities around the world and will continue to offer support to them. The Ford Fund will make a $100,000 donation to the Global Giving Ukraine Relief Fund for humanitarian aid to assist Ukrainian citizens and families who have been displaced during the crisis.
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The announcements come after Volvo told FOX Business it will not deliver any cars to the Russian market until further notice as it considers "the potential risks associated with trading material with Russia, including the sanctions imposed by the EU and US."
Also suspending vehicle exports to Russia until further notice is General Motors. While GM no longer owns or operates any manufacturing facilities in Russia, it does operate a national sales company for Russia and Commonwealth of Independent States markets based on a portfolio sourced from North America and Korea, which has an annual sales volume of approximately 3,000 vehicles per year.
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"Our thoughts are with the people of Ukraine at this time," a GM spokesperson said in a statement. "The loss of life is a tragedy and our overriding concern is for the safety of people in the region."
GM noted that it remains in contact with its Moscow-based team and is taking appropriate steps to protect them. It also is working with its suppliers to mitigate risks to its supply chain.
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Volkswagen told FOX Business that it is not currently suspending vehicle exports to Russia or production in the country. However, the company emphasized it is "greatly concerned and dismayed at the news of the war in Ukraine" and continues to "hope for a cessation of hostilities and a return to diplomacy."
"We are convinced that there can only be a sustainable solution to the conflict on the basis of international law," a Volkswagen spokesperson added.
Immediately after Russia's invasion started, Volkswagen formed a crisis management team to monitor impacts related to the conflict. The company noted that the initial hostilities aggravated the situation for its Ukraine-based suppliers, resulting in delivery bottlenecks.
To date, the company has temporarily suspended electric vehicle production at its plants in Zwickau and Dresden, Germany. It also anticipates possible production restrictions at its Wolfsburg plant and production stops at its Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles plant in Hanover.
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Meanwhile, Reuters reported that Daimler Truck owner Mercedes-Benz Group is looking at legal avenues to divest the 15% stake it holds in Russian truck maker Kamaz.
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