Future of jobs at Ford Bridgend plant thrown into doubt after Jaguar Land Rover ends contract

 
Rebecca Smith
Ford also has a plant in Dagenham
Ford also has a plant in Dagenham (Source: Getty)

The future of a UK Ford plant has been thrown into further doubt after Jaguar Land Rover cancelled a contract at Bridgend earlier than expected.

The JLR contract has around 750 people at the Welsh plant working on it, but the car firm has told Ford it intends to bring engine production in-house, before the contract comes up for renewal at the tail-end of 2020.

Some 145,000 engines were made at the plant for JLR last year.

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Ford said in a statement:

While we do not discuss the details of our contractual arrangements, we have informed our unions that Jaguar Land Rover intends to end our petrol engine supply arrangement slightly earlier than expected in late 2020.

Given our long-established and successful relationship in the delivery of world-class engines, this is disappointing news for the Ford Bridgend Engine Plant. However, as the auto industry is undergoing rapid change, we continue to look at other high technology opportunities for Bridgend in the future.

Ford remains in discussions with unions about other business opportunities that could replace the JLR contract when it draws to a close, though it is still a three-year arrangement.

JLR said: "In line with its contractual agreement established in 2008, Jaguar Land Rover has served the required three years notice to Ford Motor Company for the supply of the 6 and 8 cylinder petrol engines from its Bridgend manufacturing plant.

"Ford has been, and remains an important strategic supplier to Jaguar Land Rover under an agreement which was negotiated to support our business until the end of the decade."

JLR is yet to confirm where it will move production to. It has plugged £1bn into its Wolverhampton plant, though China is also another option.

It comes after concerns were raised by unions earlier this year over a five-year plan from the US car giant forecasting that it would cut 1,100 jobs at Bridgend by 2020.

Read more: Ford set to axe 1,160 UK jobs, Unite warns as it gears up for strike action

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