Ford to close engine plant in Britain

US automaker Ford says it plans to close one of its two engine plants in the UK as part of a restructuring efforts amid falling sales in Europe.

Ford said on Thursday that the facility will close next year and it started talks with the labor union at the factory in Bridgend, south Wales.

The plant has about 1,700 workers and exports engines to assembly factories in Europe.

Ford said the closure is unrelated to Brexit. But analysts think that the company is worried about the business fallout from Britain’s planned departure from the European Union. The current Brexit deadline is October 31.

Other automakers have announced plans to withdraw from the UK or scale back operations as Brexit looms.

Japan’s Honda Motor will close its UK auto manufacturing plant by the end of 2021. And Nissan Motor cancelled plans to build a new model in Britain. Nissan will also stop making high-end cars in the country.

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