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BMW and JLR reveal UK plants’ Brexit repercussions

BMW has said that its workers may have to go unpaid for a more than three weeks during an enforced shutdown of its Oxford manufacturing plant after Britain’s departure from the EU.

The German brand said that it could not afford to pay its 4,000 workers at the plant for another period of leave enforced by Brexit after it re-scheduled its month-long summer shut-down period to start on March 29 in an effort to mitigate the impact of the previous deadline.

Speaking to The Guardian newspaper, BMW’s chief financial officer Nicolas Peter said: “We are not capable of a second holiday period in 2019 so this could have a financial impact on our colleagues working in Oxford.”

Jaguar Land Rover chief executive, Dr Ralf Speth, meanwhile, told Sky News that its plants were unable to stockpile parts to maintain its production following a ‘no deal’ departure due to the sheer volume of components required each day.

Both men were speaking to journalists at this week’s Frankfurt Motor Show.

According to the Guardian, BMW will close its Cowley plant on October 31 and November 1, whether the UK leaves the EU with a deal or not, to guard against disruption and minimise delays to deliveries for a business.

Speth, who had previously warned that a ‘no deal’ Brexit could cost his business up to £60m a day due to resulting delays to parts deliveries expressed his frustration at being unable to mitigate against the effects of the split.

He said that JLR’s UK Plants require 20 to 25 million parts per day, delivered on time at the assembly lines in order to produce a vehicle, adding: “Stockpiling 20 million parts a day for more days is not possible at all.

“Nobody has got the warehouses, not the IT systems, not the logistical devices to make these kinds of stockpiling happen.”

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