Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors on Tuesday said they have restarted production at their domestic plants after component shortages began to ease.

The automakers have been among the worst affected by the coronavirus outbreak, having been forced to shut down their domestic plants last week due to shortages of components from their suppliers in China where economic activity remains severely disrupted by the ongoing health crisis.  

Shortages of wiring harnesses and other electrical parts in particular were blamed for last week's production shutdowns.

But the shortages began to ease this week after the two automakers shifted some production to suppliers in south east Asia with the first shipments arriving on Monday.

A Hyundai Motor Group spokesman confirmed some key Chinese suppliers had also resumed production this week and he expected production at all Hyundai and Kia plants in South Korea to be "normalized next week".

Other South Korean automakers have also been affected by production stoppages in China but shortages have also now begun to ease.

Ssangyong said it expected production at its Pyontaek vehicle assembly plant to restart on Thursday, while Renault Samsung planned to reopen its plant on 17 February.

GM Korea said so far its operations had not been affected by the virus outbreak.

Foreign automakers in China, including Toyota and Volkswagen, on Tuesday said they planned to extend some plant closures in China, also until 17 February.