"Deeply Affected" Bridgestone Halts Russia Manufacturing and Export Over Ukraine War

We’re now entering the third week of war in Ukraine, and sadly, things don’t seem to be easing up on the front. But as the Russian military keeps up the pressure on Ukraine, global governments and companies do the same to Russia, hoping enough sanctions would convince the mammoth to stop its aggression.
Bridgestone plant in Ulyanovsk 9 photos
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At the last count, over 300 international companies have withdrawn from Russia or suspended operations there over the past few weeks. On the automotive front, the list (a most extensive one can be found here, but also over at the Yale School of Management) is extremely long and includes Aston Martin, Bentley, Daimler, Ferrari, Ford, GM, Harley-Davidson, Honda, Hyundai, Iveco, Magna, Mazda, Nissan, Renault, Rolls-Royce, Uber, and Volkswagen.

Not only car and motorcycle makers, but other companies in the industry have pulled out as well, and even Formula 1 did the same. Until this past weekend, a few, including Bosch, Bridgestone and Pirelli, stood their ground, but are beginning to fold to the pressure as well.

On Monday, Bridgestone became the first of this minority group to announce it is ditching (the word the company uses is “suspend”) its operations in Russia, but also exports to the country, saying it has been “deeply affected by the war in Ukraine and its impact on many innocent people including our own employees and partners.”

Bridgestone operates a manufacturing facility and has sales offices in Ulyanovsk, on the Volga river, where over 1,000 people are employed. All will continue to be paid by the Japanese company in an undisclosed form, even if at the time of writing it’s unclear how long the suspension of operations there will last.

The decision comes into force on March 18, and will last “until further notice.” Manufacturing output outside of Russia is not expected to be impacted by the decision, Bridgestone says.
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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