September 17, 2012
Following “violent anti-Japanese protests” in China, Canon has decided to suspend operations at three of its factories in the country, along with Panasonic and several other Japanese firms, reports NBC.
The protests, which began in China last week, are due to the Japanese government striking a deal to buy the Senkaku Islands from a private Japanese owner which are claimed to belong to China. Chinese sites belonging to Japanese firms Honda and Toyota have reportedly already been targeted by protesters, with shops and restaurants also being attacked.
Canon has said that it will close three of its four sites in China on Monday and Tuesday, halting production lines at its Guangdong-based laser printer facility, a further Guangdong-based facility for manufacturing digital cameras and a copier factory in Jiangsu.
The soured relations between the two countries could be bad for both economies, with China being Japan’s biggest trade partner and Japan being China’s third largest. Last year’s total two-way trade between the countries reportedly came to more than $340 billion (€259 billion), with Yoshihiko Noda, Prime Minister of Japan commenting: “It is in everybody’s interest […] for Japan and China to maintain good relations and to find a way to avoid further escalation.”
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