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Gloucestershire Business News

Car manufacturing continues to decline

The number of cars produced in the UK fell by four per cent in October, compared to the same month last year.

Just over 134,750 new cars rolled off production lines, according to figures released today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). This was 5,622 fewer models than in October last year.

British car production has now fallen in 16 of the last 17 months. Only August saw a small rise, due to 'no deal' Brexit contingency shutdowns earlier in the year artificially boosting output that month.

In October, car production for the UK market was down 10.7% per cent, as consumer and business confidence continued to fall. Overseas orders were down 2.6 per cent.

Over the course of 2019, production is down 14.4 per cent to 1,123,926 new cars, with 80.5 per cent of them heading abroad to destinations around the world, including the EU, US, China and Japan.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: "Yet another month of falling car production makes these extremely worrying times for the sector. Our global competitiveness is under threat, and to safeguard it we need to work closely with the next government to ensure frictionless trade, free of tariffs, with regulatory alignment and continued access to talent in the future. This sector is export led, already shipping cars to more than 160 countries, and in a period of unprecedented change, a close trading relationship with the EU and preferential trading with all these other markets will be essential to keep automotive in Britain."

Punchline said: "This is bad news for Gloucestershire. The county is home to a number of small businesses which produce parts for the car industry. The continuing fall in production means they will be feeling the pinch and may be facing some difficult decisions about the future."

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