Today, April 18th, Ford’s COO Mark Fields and a senior British government minister will meet to discuss the auto supply chain in the UK, where the company plans to close a plant.
The Right Honourable Michael Fallon, minister of state for business and energy, said that even if Ford plans to close its Southampton Assembly Plant, due to the sluggish economy in Europe, the automaker and its fellow members of the US auto supply chain are optimistic regarding the future of England’s auto market.
Fallon said that Ford is willing to expand in the UK, planning an investment at its Bridgend Engine Plant. Ford did not comment on this announcement. Fallon will talk today with COO Mark Fields and other auto executives about the necessity of expanding their companies’ presence in England.
“Automotive in Britain is now a success story,” Fallon said. “We’re exporting more by value than we’re importing for the first time in 30 years. We’ve had a huge turnaround.”
Fallon added that the next important step is to gain support for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, which is a free trade agreement between US and the EU, as this move would increase exports to the US by 59%.