6500 Goans Will Be Jobless As Honda Decides To Close Its Only Factory In Europe

Is Brexit the real reason this shutdown? What is the Goan connection?

Honda will shut down its Europe factory
Honda will shut down its Europe factory

Honda, the Japanese car major has decided to shut down its only factory in the UK.

More than 3500 job cuts have been officially announced due to this shutdown, but in reality, more than 6500 Goans will lose their jobs.

What is the connection of Goans with this shutdown? And what is the primary reason for this shutdown?

Keep reading to find out more..

Honda: We Will Close Down The Swindon Factory

Honda’s Swindon factory in the UK is more than 30 years old, and it produces 150,000 Honda Civic Hatchbacks, per year. Till more, more than 30 lakh Civic cars have been manufactured here.

These cars are exported to 70 countries.

This week, Honda announced that this entire factory will be shut down, as the Japanese car major wants to focus on electric cars.

This shut down will happen by 2021, and 3500 jobs have been officially announced.

Honda Motor Europe President Katsushi Inoue said, “In light of the unprecedented changes that are affecting our industry, it is vital that we accelerate our electrification strategy and restructure our global operations accordingly,”

The Goan Connection: Honda Shutdown

In their announcement of the shutdown, Honda has said that 3500 permanent jobs will cut from their Swindon factory. This will lead to 900 Persons of Indian origin to lose their jobs.

However, more than 10,000 employees work there, and 65% of them are Indians. Eventually, by the time complete shutdown happens, all of them lose their jobs.

More than 20,000 Goans are currently residing in Swindon, where the factory is located, and once the shutdown happens, then there will be no job left in this English town.

Majority of these Goans had immigrated to Swindon using their Portuguese visa, decades back. Now, they have no-where to go.

Swindon’s first councilor of Goan-origin, Labour’s Imtiyaz Shaikh said, “It’s a sad time for everyone affected and it is unfortunate that they found out via the media rather than from the company,”

Overall, more than 7000 people will lose their jobs from the city, due to the shutdown.

Is Brexit The Real Reason?

Locals say that the reason given by Honda to terminate jobs is not real.

Real reason is Brexit – the UK has decided to quit the European Union, and this will happen in March. Due to Brexit, several other automobile companies have also announced job cuts.

An unnamed worker from the factory said, “Honda does not have the infrastructure to build electric cars here, but it does in Japan. It has signed an FTA (Free Trade Agreement) with the EU so that’s why. If the UK government had come up with a deal for a soft Brexit, this would not have happened.”

Recently, Jaguar announced 4500 job cuts, and Nissan has said that it will not manufacture their X-Trail SUV in the UK. Even BMW will close down their factory for a month, after Brexit happens in March, 2019.

We will keep you updated, as more details come in.

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