Honda Will Stay In The UK For Now
The future of automakers in the UK is a controversial subject at the moment. The referendum vote for Britain to leave the European Union was quite a shock for manufacturers who export and import from Europe, and some of them are making large waves with their temper tantrums. While other brands play games with the British public, Honda has announced that it is planning on remaining in the UK for now. That’s surely a relief for its suppliers and employees in the area, but what conditions would make it leave instead?
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Honda has no concrete answers to that question for now, which is good because they are issuing no ultimatums, but bad because it leaves employees on edge. At this point, no one would really fault any major exporter for moving their plants and facilities. If the UK exit from the EU, or “Brexit,” leads to tariffs and other trade penalties snapping into place when trading outside of the islands, there is no way that Honda could escape without cutting staff or charging more for its vehicles.
UK Business Secretary Greg Clark has said that all assurances given to Nissan, who recently announced a major new investment in the UK after rumors or backdoor deals with the government, would be extended to other automakers. Honda has not made it clear whether it has become part of a government program, only remarking that the current decision to stay is not formal, and that would be issued later.
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Before Brexit even became a concern, Honda was scaling back production in the UK before deciding to make it the global focus point of all Civic hatchback production.
News Source: The Financial Times (subscription required)