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PARIS: French carmaker Renault expects to produce at least 300,000 fewer vehicles this year due to a global shortage in semiconductor chips, three sources close to firm told Reuters on Wednesday, a much bigger hit than previously estimated.

The supply problems would cost Renault, which is set to publish its third-quarter sales on Friday, over a third more than the 220,000 lost vehicles it forecast in early September.

A Renault spokesperson declined to comment.

"The forecasts change all the time, but the shortfall will be between 300,000 and 400,00 vehicles," said one of the sources.

The other two sources said this figure could be between 350,000 and 380,000 vehicles.

Renault forecasts 2021 profit despite global chip shortage

The shortage in chips has come at the worst possible time, automotive lobby group PFA said on Tuesday, as carmakers recover from coronavirus disruptions and shift towards producing all-electric vehicles.

It said that chip supply constraints could stretch well into 2022.

Renault said over the summer that electric vehicles would account for up to 90% of its Renault brand sales by 2030, but component shortages have forced carmakers worldwide to cut or even suspend production.

All cars manufactured in the European Union this year must comply with EU regulations that cap average CO2 emissions from new cars at 95g CO2/km, or face heavy fines.

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