Ford job concerns “first real test for new First Minister”

Suzy Davies, Welsh Conservative Assembly Member for South Wales West, said:

“A thousand job losses is staggering news, a real punch in the stomach to so many families who live and work in the area.

“This may be a private company but the scale of potential job losses was identified as very serious some years ago. In those circumstances, it’s right we know about how Welsh Government has been working with Ford.

“I raised concerns with Welsh Government about long term job security at this site as far back as 2016.

“The Economy Minister said that Welsh Government would only support Ford if ‘five years sustainable and secure employment’ was guaranteed. We need to know how hard Welsh Government have pushed Ford to keep those promises.

“Also, with the separate threat of the drop in demand by Jaguar Land Rover for Dragon engines from the Bridgend plant, I think we should also be given more detail on Welsh Government’s representations to Jaguar Land Rover”.

Mrs Davies added:

“Welsh Government also said that they were in discussions with Ford about how they could support new technologies like electric engines and autonomous vehicles.

“However three years down the line there appears to have been no progress on this. Who knows if it might have influenced Ford’s plans but we do need to know exactly what Welsh Government has done in the meantime.

“I have written to the Economy Secretary calling for him to explain why he has not made more progress on this.

“As it is, this could well be the first real test for the new First Minister.”