Volkswagen's SEAT partly halts output at Spanish plant due to chip shortage

MADRID, Aug 20 (Reuters) - Volkswagen’s Spanish unit SEAT has partly halted car assembly at its plant near Barcelona due to the global semiconductor supply bottleneck, the company said in a statement on Friday .

The plant has idled its assembly line number 2 for two days because it lacks chips, the statement said.

SEAT, which usually closes down the plant in August for summer holidays, had made an exception and opened the factory this month to offset a production shortfall in the first half of the year.

But the scarcity of chips eventually forced a partial closure for two days, it said.

Overall, SEAT produced 8,000 cars in August, partly offsetting a shortfall in the first half.

Car makers around the world have been forced to reduce the pace of production in recent months due to a scarcity of chips.

After idling plants last year as the pandemic took hold, auto makers are now competing with the consumer electronics industry for chip deliveries amid global supply disruptions.

Volkswagen had said it expects the situation to improve by the end of the year and aims to make up for production shortfalls in the second half as far as possible, though the chips crunch is not abating.

Earlier this month, Infineon, the top automotive supplier, said it had suspended production at one of its plants in Malaysia in June. (Reporting by Inti Landauro; editing by Nathan Allen and Jason Neely)