The British Government is seeking a deal to help shield the car manufacturing industry from the fallout of the exit of Britain from the EU. In light of this Honda, Japan’s third-largest car-maker, has said that it has ‘no plans for now’ to withdraw from the car manufacturing in the UK.
These comments follow Greg Clark, the UK Business secretary’s, assurances to Nissan, and other car groups with plants in the country. Nissan made the decision to invest in Sunderland just last week with Seiji Kuraishi, Honda’s Executive Vice-President explaining that they would be leaving their business in the UK for the time being.
What Kuraishi didn’t say was whether he had received assurances on tariff-free access to Europe but made it clear that although they had not asked for any special treatment from the UK government, the lines of communication were good.
A strategic shift was made last year by Honda, as previously it had been scaling back its struggling UK operation but it has now made its Swindon factory the global hub from which to export its new five-door version of the Civic hatchback.
The support of the UK industry came in the advent of strong car sales in China.
What remains to be seen is whether other car manufacturers will consider halting investment in Britain unless there is compensation to offset import taxes.