UNITED KINGDOM (OBSERVATORY) – Automakers operating in the UK reported a decrease in car production by more than 6% in the first three months of 2018, as the industry worries about the future of diesel cars and the prospects for exports after Brexit.
Automakers produced 440426 vehicles in the period from January to March, which is 6.3% less than a year ago.
Only in March, the rate of decline in annual terms accelerated to 13.3%, as bad weather disrupted the supply chain.
“The double-digit decline in the production of cars … is a matter of serious concern,” said Mike Howes, executive director of the Automobile and Traders Society (SMMT).
Four of the five cars built in the UK are being exported. But the quarterly drop was caused by the fall in production in the domestic market, which fell 14.1% compared to a 4% decline in the output of export vehicles.
The income of British consumers was affected by the high inflation caused by the depreciation of the pound sterling after the Brexit vote in June 2016, and some Britons did not dare to buy diesel cars because of concerns over environmental damage and rising taxes.
“After the recent announcements to reduce jobs in the sector, it is vital that industry and consumers are more confident about both the future policies for diesel and other low-emission technologies, and in our trade relations after Brexit,” said Hows .
Nissan and Jaguar Land Rover continue to cut jobs according to industry sources, this is blamed for the lack of domestic demand for diesel cars.
Recent data add signs that British economic growth is likely to show a decline when preliminary data on gross domestic product (GDP) for the first quarter will be published.