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Renault Resumes Car Production in Russia as Rivals Withdraw

The French carmaker had suspended production in February, citing logistical problems. The decision to resume activity is backed by the French government, Renault’s main shareholder.
Renault has a controlling two-thirds stake in major Russian carmaker Avtovaz
Renault has a controlling two-thirds stake in major Russian carmaker Avtovaz

French carmaker Renault resumed operations at its production facilities in Moscow on Monday, a move that comes as other international companies flee the Russian market over the country’s invasion of Ukraine.

A company spokesperson confirmed the reopening to news agency Reuters. Renault had suspended some operations at its assembly plants in late February due to component shortages caused by logistical bottlenecks, according to reports from local units.

The company did not specify at the time whether the supply chain issues were due to the war in Ukraine. But sweeping Western sanctions against Russia have further damaged supply chains at a time when automakers are already struggling to get hold of the semiconductor chips used in many parts of car production. Recent sanctions include a ban on semiconductor exports to Russia.

Renault controls key Russian carmaker

Renault did not indicate how long the plant, which produces the Renault Duster, Kaptur and Arkana models, would stay open.

“The situation with components supply is unstable and changing, we prefer not to make any predictions,” a spokesperson for Renault Moscow told Reuters.

Renault reopened its plant at a time when many international companies were shuttering their business in Russia due to sanctions and public pressure linked to the country’s invasion of Ukraine. Over 400 companies, including Apple, Coca-Cola, and McDonald’s, have reduced or halted operations in Russia since the war began, according to researchers at Yale University in the US tracking the trend. Foreign carmakers like Germany’s Volkswagen and Japan’s Toyota have also suspended production and exports. 

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