Very real very real concerns: Derby, Ellesmere Port, and Luton

I don’t know about you, but this seems worrying.

Wednesday’s Derby Telegraph:

When Toyota announced plans to invest £240 million in its Burnaston plant, the car giant called for continued tariff- and barrier-free access between the UK and Europe. Mr Leroy expressed his concerns about the Government’s approach to Brexit in an interview with Reuters at the Frankfurt car show.

“A few months ago the Government was saying ‘we’re sure we’ll be able to negotiate (a deal) without any trade tax,'” he said. “They are not saying that any more.”He added: “It’s clear that, if we have to wait two to three more years to have clarity on this topic, we will have a big question mark about our future investment in the country.”

Mr Leroy, Toyota’s top foreign executive, said the company could not wait indefinitely before deciding whether to build a new model at the site after production of the ageing Avensis model ends. Burnaston also builds the smaller Auris.

“We cannot take this kind of decision before we have clarity on the future trade relationship,” said Mr Leroy. “We will not close the plant tomorrow morning, but if in two to three years we have to decide some future investments, of course the key point will be the competitiveness of this plant in future.”

And today, in the Daily Hell:

The fate of Vauxhall’s two UK factories and their workforce is on hold until their new French bosses receive ‘guidance’ from the UK and EU over what sort of trade deal will be in place post-Brexit.

Ministers and politicians in Britain and on the Continent need to explain ‘how they want to play the game’, before serious decisions can be made on whether to keep, close or even expand the UK plants, said Carlos Tavares, chief executive of new Vauxhall Owners, PSA Group.

’I would prefer to have some guidance from the UK government and from the European Commission about how they want to play the game,’ he added.‘It would be much better for everybody, not just the PSA Group, but also for all the other stakeholders, that we have some guidance about how this is going to unfold.

‘The sooner we have some guidance from the UK government and the European Commission about how they want to play the Brexit, the better it will be.’

Tavares also said that the PSA Group operates a five-year plan….sorry….product cycle, and the next one is up in 2021, which implies that the decision process has already started.

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