Aston Martin Says It Needs A Brexit Deal To Continue Production

Cornelia Mascio
Novembre 15, 2017

ASTON MARTIN may have to suspend production if Theresa May fails to strike a Brexit deal with Brussels, its boss warned yesterday.

The high-end auto manufacturer which makes all its vehicles in the United Kingdom told the Commons Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee on Tuesday that leaving the European Union without a trade deal would be "semi-catastrophic".

"We are a British company. We produce our cars exclusively in Britain and will continue to do so", he said.

Mike Hawes, chief executive of vehicle industry trade body SMMT, added it might not even be possible to meet all the requirements of the certification process if the United Kingdom had to start again from scratch, rather than build on existing arrangements. "During that transition we would have to look to see how Aston Martin could recertify under a non-VCA approval structure".

Mike Hawes, the chief executive of the Society for Motor Manufacturers and Traders, also warned the cost per vehicle of having no Brexit deal could be as much as £1,800.

Mr Keating told the MPs that Honda would take 18 months to get its systems ready for new customs procedures for exporting to Europe.

Mr Keating said Honda imports two million components every day from the Continent on 350 trucks and has just one hour of stock on its shelves.

Keating told the committee that Honda needs clarity by March 2018 on the trade framework because of the roughly yearlong lead times needed to prepare for the U.K.'s exit from the bloc in April 2019.

Investment had been averaging £2.5bn a year but fell to £1.6bn in 2016 and is headed to be less than £1bn this year, with anecdotal evidence of auto companies "sitting on their hands", said Mr Hawes. "The figure is more like 25%, which is a long way from the 60% threshold you would need to qualify for a free trade agreement".

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