Nissan blames a staff shortage for an inspection scandal that led to a recall of 1.2 million vehicles. As David Pollard reports, the carmaker last week shaved its full-year operating profit forecast as it braces for the fallout.
It wasn't so much the staff who were there who were at fault ... As those who weren't. Nissan blaming a shortage of trained personnel As it presents a new report - into a crisis that led to a recall of 1.2 million vehicles. (SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) NISSAN MOTORS CEO, HIROTO SAIKAWA, SAYING: "There was a big gap between the level of skill some of the inspection officers had, and the strict inspection regulations they needed to adhere to." The recall included all passenger cars produced for sale in Japan over the past three years. And came after the company found that - for two decades - vehicle checks were carried out by uncertified inspectors. (SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) NISSAN MOTORS CEO, HIROTO SAIKAWA, SAYING: "This pain is sudden for us, and significant. We want to move on from our old ways, and we were given a precious opportunity to examine the structures in Nissan." The solution, says the carmaker, is to get more inspectors - around 20 per cent more ... And to up the number of quality assurance managers. Nissan expects a 25 billion yen bill for the recall alone - over 200 million dollars. Last week trimming its full-year operating forecast as it braces for the fallout. The latest announcement left some analysts unimpressed. SOUNDBITE (English) CITY INDEX MARKET ANALYST, KEN ODELUGA, SAYING: "It really is no excuse whatsoever ... Nissan really does need to put a lot more resource into this and I think also this estimate of there is in the hundreds of millions of dollars of the impact is going to rise as well." On the plus side for the carmaker, no vehicles for foreign markets were affected - safety checks were carried out on those. A new vice president will be assigned to oversee all its plants in Japan - as it battles to restore its brand image at home.