Another 450 automotive workers to be laid off

Posted on 14 Jan 2009 by The Manufacturer

Jaguar Land Rover becomes the latest automotive firm in Britain to cut staff after Nissan announced 1200 are to be made redundant from its Sunderland plant last week.

This round of redundancies follows October’s announcement that the Tata-owned British car maker was cutting 850 IT and engineering workers.

None of the latest 450 to go will be full-time production staff however. The number will be made up of 300 managers and 150 temporary agency employees.

The firm’s chief executive David Smith said: “It is only right and proper that our response to the unavoidable impact of the credit crunch and a severe reduction in demand includes actions across all grades and functions in the company.

“It is critical that Jaguar Land Rover becomes a more efficient and dynamic organisation to face up to the challenges that we will meet in the years ahead.”
The losses are to be suffered across the firm’s sites in Warwickshire, Coventry, Solihull, Castle Bromwich and Halewood on Merseyside.

“While the announcement made today is desperately sad for those involved, it reaffirms industry’s continued concerns,” said Paul Everitt, the Society of Motor Manfacturers and Traders (SMMT) chief executive. “We need swift and urgent action to mitigate the damage caused by the downturn and ensure we retain valuable industrial capability.

“Government must ease access to credit and finance, incentives for companies to retain skilled employees and maintain investment in new technology, provide incentives to encourage the take-up of new vehicles and maintain public procurement of new vehicles. These measures will ensure the UK automotive industry is best placed to exploit the economic upturn when it comes.”

Talks over a touted government bailout continue.