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article imageHonda to cut UK jobs on weak European car demand

By AFP     Mar 25, 2014 in Business

Honda will axe 340 jobs by cutting shifts at its factory in western England in response to weak European demand for its cars, the Japanese automaker said on Tuesday.

The firm will cut the production rate at its factory in Swindon from three shifts to two. This would mean that the number of production workers would fall by about 10 percent.

Most cars built at the plant are exported but sales in other countries have not been so strong as in Britain, Honda Motor Europe said in a statement

The factory, which will employ roughly 3,000 staff after the cuts, makes car models including the Civic, Civic Tourer, CR-V and Jazz for the British and European markets.

"Over the last 12 months, we haven't seen the growth we'd anticipated. With no increase forecast for the next couple of years, we must scale our manufacturing activity accordingly," said Ian Howells, senior vice president of Honda Motor Europe.

"However, with the restructuring we're taking today, and our new model plans, we remain confident in the long-term future of our Swindon plant."

He added in the statement: "Our Swindon operation continues to be the hub for our European car manufacturing activity."

The company said it would begin consulting over the proposed job cuts at the Wiltshire plant, which has been manufacturing Honda cars since 1992.

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