Japanese firms suspend operations in China

Electronics manufacturers Panasonic, Canon and Sony have temporarily closed factories in China, following anti-Japan attacks to their properties in the country over disputed islands in the East China Sea.
Written by Ellyne Phneah, Contributor

Japanese technology manufacturers have temporarily closed factories in China following anti-Japan protests in the country over the East China Sea, according to several Reuters reports on Monday.

Panasonic had suspected productions of two electronics components plants in China and closed one factory, telling its workers to stay at home. This follows its facilities being attacked by anti-Japan protesters, and the firm said it will reopen after assessing the damages.

Another plant in China had been closed after several workers "sabotaged" operations in the factory, Atsushi Hinoki, a Tokyo-based Panasonic spokesperson told the newswire. The plant is set to remain closed until Tuesday.

Canon, too, had on Monday suspended operations at three of its four plants in China for two days. The plants include its laser printer factory and digital camera factory in the city of Guangdong, and a copier plant in Jiangsu, another Chinese. 

Another technology giant, Sony Electronics has discouraged non-essential travel to China over staff safety concerns. A company spokesperson in Shanghai who declined to be identified also told the newswire operations at Sony's offices in China will resume on Tuesday but the company was considering whether or not to take action regarding its retail outlets and factories.

Protests in China and attacks against Japanese firms begun on Saturday, following mounting tensions over a set of disputed islands in the East China Sea between China and Japan.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hong Lei however, told reporters at a briefing it will protect Japanese citizens and property and urged anti-apan protests to express themselves in an "orderly, rational and lawful" way after the mass demonstrations. However, Hong noted it was up to Japan to correct its ways as the direction of developments was now in the country's hands.


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