• Kyodo News

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Nippon Steel Corp. said Wednesday it will force around 1,400 workers at five steel plants in Japan to take one to two days of partially paid leave each month from April to counter falls in demand from corporate users like automakers amid the economic downturn.

The first such measure in nine years will affect the steelmaker’s Muroran Works in Hokkaido, Kamaishi Works in Iwate Prefecture, Tokyo Works, Sakai Works in Osaka Prefecture and Hikari Pipe and Tube Division in Yamaguchi Prefecture.

The factories have been manufacturing auto parts, tire and construction material, steel tubes and other components.

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