WASHINGTON, March 11 (Reuters) – The South Korean government said on Wednesday that it will waive the two-week quarantine requirement for business workers who work to secure the supply of auto chips during the pandemic, and prioritize vaccination of key personnel for car chip purchases.
South Korea is trying to contain the damage from the chip shortage. The problem has plagued automakers around the world and forced major automakers including Volkswagen and General Motors to cut production. Germany and the United States are also stepping up efforts to address chip shortages.
South Korea’s leading automaker Hyundai Motor has so far kept factories running, but a union official at the company said overtime production of a less popular model had been halted and production schedules were being adjusted weekly.
South Korea’s government said in a statement on Wednesday that while the domestic auto industry is in better shape compared with international rivals, “concerns about future production disruptions have increased.”
The statement added that chip production capacity cannot be ramped up quickly, and that 98 percent of automotive chips used by South Korean automakers come from abroad.
The South Korean government also said it would speed up performance evaluations of automotive chip components and modules developed by domestic companies.