Ford warns no-deal Brexit would be ‘catastrophic’

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FORD has said a no-deal Brexit would be catastrophic for the firm’s manufacturing operations in the UK and that it would do “whatever is necessary” to protect its business.

The comments come after a report the carmaker was stepping up preparations to move production out of the UK.

Ford declined to comment directly on The Times’ report, but said it had long warned against a “hard Brexit”.

The company is the latest carmaker to warn on the risks of a no-deal Brexit.

“Such a situation would be catastrophic for the UK auto industry and Ford’s manufacturing operations in the country,” the company said in a statement.

“We will take whatever action is necessary to preserve the competitiveness of our European business.”

Ford employs 13,000 people in the UK at sites in Bridgend, Dagenham, Halewood and Dunton.

According to The Times’ report, the firm told Prime Minister Theresa May on a telephone call with business leaders that it was preparing alternative sites abroad.

During the call Mrs May confirmed reports that the government was preparing a package of financial support for businesses affected by a no-deal Brexit but declined to elaborate, The Times said.

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