Renault Samsung Motors confirmed it plans to suspend production at its only assembly plant until mid October to slow the build-up of inventory.

The automaker, 81% owned by Renault, said it planned to close its Busan plant – located in the south of the country – from 25 September until 18 October.

The company had already scheduled to close the facility in the first week of October for the annual Chuseok (autumn) holidays, so production would be suspended for an additional 11 working days in this period.

Renault-Samsung reported a 27% decline in global sales to 84,158 units in the first eight months of 2020 from 114,705 units in the same period of last year, due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and also the discontinuation of orders for the Rogue SUV from Nissan. This followed an 18% sales decline to 227,577 units in the whole of 2019.

Earlier this week the company announced it would begin exporting its XM3 SUV model to Europe from next year to help lift production volume and utilisation at the plant.