JLR, which employs more than 4,000 people at Halewood, says it has made the decision on the advice of the NHS and Public Health England. Tony McDonough reports
Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is halting production at its three UK factories – including Halewood in Merseyside – for three weeks amid the worsening coronavirus crisis.
JLR, which employs more than 4,000 people at Halewood assembling the Evoque and Discovery Sport models, says it has made the decision on the advice of the NHS and Public Health England to minimise the spread of the infection.
This follows the shutdown of the Vauxhall Astra plant in Ellesmere Port, earlier this week, which employs around 900 people.
In a statement, the company said: “In light of the ongoing coronavirus situation, Jaguar Land Rover has confirmed that it will temporarily suspend production at its UK manufacturing facilities over the course of next week.
“The company’s intention is to resume in the week of 20 April, subject to review of the rapidly-changing circumstances. As a responsible business, Jaguar Land Rover is operating in line with advice from the NHS and Public Health England to minimise the spread of the coronavirus, whilst implementing plans to safeguard its business continuity.
“The company will work towards an orderly return to production once conditions permit. Currently, Jaguar Land Rover’s manufacturing plants in Brazil and India continue operating. The company’s joint venture plant in China reopened in the week of 24 February, as life begins to get back to normal in the country.
“Although the company’s focus must be on its business and responsibilities to employees, Jaguar Land Rover is doing whatever it can to support its communities through the current situation.
“The company’s thoughts are with those directly affected by COVID-19 and with the healthcare professionals, whose role in combating this virus is appreciated by all.”
JLR sales in China slumped by 85% in February due to the disruption caused by the coronavirus, its parent company Tata Motors said earlier this month.