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Brexit contributing to Ford’s plans to axe thousands of jobs at Bridgend plant, says union

Wednesday, March 1, 2017 9:07
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Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) is set to axe up to 1,160 jobs at its Bridgend plant in South Wales by 2021, according to the Unite union.

Unite boss Len McCluskey said jobs are at risk as contracts will come to an end at the Bridgend plant over the next four years. The plant currently employs 1,760 workers.

The uncertainty surrounding Brexit could also be a contributing factor in the company’s decision, McCluskey added.

Prime Minister Theresa May today said she would hold regular talks with Ford to make sure the plant continues to be successful following Brexit. The government has said it plans to trigger Article 50, the formal process of UK’s exit from the European Union, by the end of this month.

“Ministers in this government have been engaging with various companies within the automotive sector, including Ford and other companies,” she told parliament.

“We now account for around a third of Ford’s global engine production and Bridgend (engine plant) continues to be an important part of that. We have had dialogue with Ford, we will continue to have a regular dialogue with Ford about the ways in which government can help to make sure that this success continues.”

Unite was made aware of Ford’s plans for a reduction in headcount in the company’s five-year plan, which was provided to the union.

The plan revealed that Ford expects a “significant drop in the number of jobs”.

McCluskey told ITV: “I’ll be asking the Ford management when we meet them to explain this, to go into more detail.”

He continued: “Our message is clear: Ford has got a duty to commit to the workforce in Bridgend and how important it is to the whole of South Wales.”

The news came as the car maker reported a 4% decline in February sales in the US. A 24% drop in car sales offset a 9% increase in sales for its F-Series pick-up trucks and 6% growth in SUV sales.

Shares in Ford rose 1.44% in early US trading. 

Story by ProactiveInvestors


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