Nissan has announced a net loss of 671 billion yen (US$6.2, or RM27.1 billion) for the year ended in March, a dramatic swing from the 319 billion yen (RM12.9 billion) profit it had recorded the year before.

The result is the beleaguered automaker‘s worst financial performance since 1999, when it lost 684 billion yen (RM27.6 billion at the current exchange rate) amid a restructuring plan that was initiated by former boss Carlos Ghosn, the Nikkei reports. It also exceeds the 233 billion yen (RM9.4 billion, current rate) net loss it recorded in 2008, a year marked by the global financial crisis.

It said the 2019 result included 603 billion yen (RM24.4 billion) in costs associated with restructuring and impairments as it “focused on operational and efficiency improvements to transform the business.”

“The global Covid-19 pandemic substantially impacted Nissan’s production, sales and other business activities in all regions,” the automaker said via a statement, but added that it had sufficient liquidity to steer through the challenging business environment.

Last week, it was reported that Japan’s third-largest automaker was set to cut over 20,000 jobs, which would represent a 15% reduction of its 139,000 global workforce, in a bid to reduce costs. It has already shuttered its manufacturing operations in Indonesia and is phasing out of its Datsun sub-brand, and is now closing its Spanish assembly plant, located in Barcelona. The closure will result in a loss of 2,800 jobs.

The annual financial result comes a day after the company and alliance partners Renault and Mitsubishi Motors revealed plans to make their global operations more efficient, turning away from a focus on sales growth.

Despite a rocky period that threatened to severe the relationship, both Nissan and Renault have reaffirmed their commitment and have introduced new initiatives as part of a new cooperation business model.

The automaker sold 4.79 million vehicles in its latest financial year, a drop of 13% from last year. In fiscal 2017, it achieved a record 5.79 million units in global sales.

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