Justin Madders MP to meet business secretary to discuss Vauxhall job losses

Reporter:

David Triggs

Justin Madders is due to meet the secretary of state for business next week to discuss job losses at the Vauxhall car making plant.

The MP for Ellesmere Port & Neston has arranged a meeting with Greg Clark on Monday.

Vauxhall’s owner, the PSA Group, announced earlier this month that it is to cut about 400 jobs at its Ellesmere Port plant due to falling sales.

Mr Madders immediately called for ‘political and financial commitment’ to the factory, which employs about 1,800 people in Ellesmere Port.

The Labour MP highlighted the plight of the Vauxhall plant in a Commons debate about automotive and electric vehicles on Monday evening.

He said: “At the moment the real challenge to the automotive industry – to all manufacturing – is the uncertainty created by Brexit. Investment in the automotive sector has halved over the past 12 months. We need to reverse that trend as a matter of urgency.”

Mr Madders said he was a ‘realist’ not a ‘Luddite’ when it came to his views on electric cars, but added: “There is an immediate short-term need to proactively support UK car manufacturers and I hope we will hear some good news in next month’s Budget.”

It is hoped that the 400 job losses can be achieved through voluntary means.

Len McCluskey, general secretary of the Unite union, said news of the cuts was ‘extremely difficult to take’ and ‘another huge loss for the north west economy’.

A spokesman for the PSA Group, which also makes Peugeot and Citroen, explained that the cuts were announced because they are ‘facing challenging European market conditions’.

Staff at the Ellesmere Port factory will move from two production shifts to one in early 2018.

Email:

david.triggs@nwn.co.uk

See full story in the Chester Leader

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