Ford Motor Co. is likely to announce the Southampton factor shutdown as a part of its European operations restructuring due to continuing eurozone crisis.
Closure of Southampton factory will not only end more than 100 years association of Ford with Britain, but will also see over 500 British workers losing their jobs.
The announcement regarding the Southampton factory is likely to be made after a management and union meeting, which starts at 10:00 BST at Ford’s Basildon technical centre. The speculations of Southampton plant closure fever-pitched after Ford announced the proposed closure of Belgian plant, hitting 9,500 jobs.
Ford hasn’t made any comments regarding the Southampton factory closure yet, but has called its British trade union representatives in the meeting.
Recent factory closures by Ford can be blamed to the developing pressure in Europe, where demand for Ford’s models is diminishing. Ford is expected to record a lose of more than $1 billion in Europe this year.
Ford’s plan to end productions has come as a threat to Britain, where it employs 11,500 workers in motor industry. Ford Financial and Ford Retail employs another 15,000 British workers.
MPs and leaders expressed their concerns for the workers, with Councillor Keith House, Lib Dem leader of Eastleigh Borough Council, saying that the closure of Southampton plant would mark a “desperately sad day, not just for Southampton but for the whole region”.
“Huge numbers of families would be affected. It would also be very bad for the UK motor industry”, claimed Labour MP John Denham. Shocked by the news, Southampton City Council’s Labour leader, Richard Williams, said “we want to help those workers affected as much as possible”.