Honda sells its only British plant to logistics giant, Panattoni

HONDA is selling its only British car plant located in Swindon (southern England) to logistics giant Panattoni as the new owner reportedly has plans to make large investments at the site.

The Japanese automaker, which builds about a tenth of the 1.5 million car output in Britain, made the decision two years after it announced its intention in 2019 to cease production at its Swindon plant. The plant closer is expected to lead to 3,500 job losses.

Honda, which has been struggling in Europe, has said the closure of the plant was not related to Britain’s departure from the European Union but it needed to focus activities in regions where it expects to sell most cars.

Panattoni said it was making a £700 mil (US$965 mil) investment in its logistics-related development, with the aim of creating new jobs, once Honda completes decommissioning of the plant that builds its Civic hatchbacks, likely next spring, the Financial Times reported earlier.

The latest move followed decisions by electronics firms Sony and Panasonic to move their headquarters to the EU from Britain, while Hitachi has shelved a nuclear power project in Britain amid Brexit. – March 27, 2021

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