Hyundai has closed a factory in South Korea on Friday after an employee tested positive for coronavirus, disrupting production of well-known models such as Palisade sport utility vehicle.
Shares of the automaker dropped down over 5% following the news, while the wider market dropped 3.3%. The closing dealt a fresh setback to the automaker, which has gradually restarted production at local plants hit by a Chinese parts shortage following the spread of the virus outbreak.
South Korea has the most infected after China, affecting companies such as Samsung and Hyundai. South Korea on Friday reported 256 new cases, bringing the overall number of infected to 2,022, as the world moves closer to a global recession.
“The company has also placed colleagues who came near to the infected employee in self-quarantine and taken steps to have them tested for possible infection,” Hyundai stated.
The company added that it was disinfecting the plant. It did not state when production would restart.
Hyundai operates five car plants in Ulsan, which has an yearly production capacity of 1.4 million vehicles, or almost 30% of Hyundai’s global production. Hyundai has hired 34,000 workers there in the world’s biggest automobile complex.
The factory that was closed produces sport utility vehicles (SUVs) such as the Palisade, Tucson, Santa Fe and Genesis GV80.
A factory operated by Hyundai supplier Seojin Industrial had been shut down following the death of a virus-infected worker there. It restarted Wednesday.