Brexit issues develop as decline in UK automotive manufacturing continues

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Summer time manufacturing facility shutdowns contribute to the third month in a row of declining manufacturing figures within the automotive trade

The UK’s automotive manufacturing trade has posted the third consecutive month of falling output in August, with a 12.9% decline in contrast with the identical month in 2017. 

A complete 89,254 automobiles had been produced within the UK in August, in contrast with 102,438 in August 2017. Throughout the yr thus far, a producing output has fallen by 5.2%, that means nearly 57,000 fewer automobiles have been produced within the UK throughout the yr thus far, in contrast with the identical interval final yr. This decline is larger than that for whole automotive registrations within the UK, which has declined by four.2% for the yr thus far. 

The decline in manufacturing was pushed by a pointy drop in native demand for UK-produced automobiles of 38.eight%, with 16,721 automobiles constructed within the UK and being bought right here, which represents 17.eight% of August’s whole new automotive registrations.

Vehicles constructed for export remained buoyant, with a relatively modest three.eight% decline in August, and 72,983 automobiles leaving the nation. 

SMMT boss Mike Hawes pinned the decline to additional uncertainty round producers’ summer season shutdowns of their manufacturing vegetation, however added: “The quieter summer season months are sometimes topic to fluctuations because of the variable timing and period of annual upkeep and re-tooling shutdowns. This instability was exacerbated in August, with the trade racing to recertify total mannequin ranges to fulfill harder [emissions] testing requirements in drive on 1 September.

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“With exports, the bulk to the EU, persevering with to drive demand, it underscores the significance of a Brexit settlement to safeguard this commerce; for our sector, ‘no deal’ shouldn’t be an choice.”

UK-based Mini not too long ago issued a warning round Brexit, stating that within the weeks after the UK’s 29 March 2019 exit from the European Union, the model will shut its Oxford plant for a couple of weeks, shifting ahead its summer season shutdown date to coincide with when anticipated Brexit-related provide points would possibly occur. 

The SMMT has lengthy warned of the dangers to UK manufacturing that Brexit – laborious or in any other case – poses, warning that the “authorities should now preserve financial stability and safe a take care of the EU which safeguards UK automotive pursuits” following the Brexit vote in 2016. 

A peak in UK manufacturing was seen in March 2017, with over 170,000 automobiles produced that month. This determine was the best month-to-month output for UK-based automotive manufacturing in 17 years. 

The most recent determine is the bottom year-to-date output for UK automotive manufacturing since earlier than the UK’s vote to depart the EU. 

Learn extra: 

Brexit: what do the automotive makers assume?

UK automotive manufacturing hits 17-year excessive because of rising exports

UK demand for British-built automobiles drops by nearly half in June

UK-built automobiles ‘to price £2700 extra in EU’ with no-deal Brexit


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