Belfast Telegraph

Honda puts brakes on UK output

By Alan Jones

Car giant Honda is to halve production at its UK factory from next week until the end of May because of a shortage of parts from Japan.

The 3,000 workers at the plant in Swindon, Wilts, will remain on full pay, and the move will lead to 22,500 fewer cars being built, although Honda said it will make up the production by the end of the financial year.

Most parts for the three models built in Swindon are sourced in Europe, but a number of parts continue to be supplied from Japan, which is still recovering from the devastating earthquake and tsunami.

The interruption of supply of these parts will now have an impact on production in the UK, said Honda.

"Production volume will continue at approximately 50% of the planned weekly level from April 11," the firm said in a statement.

"By taking this action, Honda of the UK Manufacturing (HUM) will be able to continue production by utilising HUM's flexible working policy. Pay is maintained for all associates.

"Once full production is resumed, the reduced volume production will be quickly recovered using the banked hours."

Ken Keir, executive vice president of Honda Motor Europe, said: "We've taken the decision to reduce our production volumes at HUM as it enables us to continue with our manufacturing activities, minimising the impact on Honda customers, dealers and associates.

"We appreciate everyone's understanding, customers and dealers, in these challenging times."