Honda halts production at its Swindon factory for the second time in weeks due to ‘global supply issues’

  • Honda confirms ‘some production activities’ halted for Tuesday and Wednesday
  • Citing ‘global supply issues’, the firm says production should restart on Thursday
  • This is the second time production has been halted in as many months as Covid disrupted global freight schedules and sparked shortage of shipping containers

Honda has temporarily paused some production at its Swindon plant.

The car manufacturer said the temporary shutdowns – expected to last through Tuesday and Wednesday – were as a result of ‘global supply issues delays’.

The company said in a statement on Tuesday afternoon: ‘Honda has confirmed to employees that some production activities will not run Tuesday 5 and Wednesday 6 January due to global supply issues delays.

Honda’s Swindon factory, which is responsible for production of the Civic, is set to restart production on Thursday after citing ‘global supply issues’ for the latest halt in production

‘The situation is currently being monitored with a view to restart production on Thursday 7 January.’

Trade unions have confirmed staff will remain on full pay through the closure and praised management for being so open about the shipping delays. 

It is the second stoppage in as many months, after ‘transport-related parts delays’ triggered a pause in December.

In early December, containers were piling up at Southampton, Felixstowe and London Gateway amid a global shipping crisis that led to the cost of transporting goods from Asia soaring by as much as five times.

Imports from Europe were also disrupted, with large queues of lorries outside the port and Channel Tunnel.

Hauliers travelling to and from the UK and Europe said they had not seen such volumes in 30 years.

Covid has disrupted global freight schedules and sparked a shortage of shipping containers, but the issue was compounded by a surge in demand for imports due to Christmas and stockpiling by firms worried about No Deal Brexit tariffs.

After its last halt in production, Honda said it was looking at alternative to bring in parts, such as using air freight.

Honda has temporarily paused production at its Swindon factory due to ‘global supply issues’

The Japanese car giant employs the just-in-time production system which means it brings in components only when they are required, but timetables are vulnerable to disruption.

Honda’s Swindon site is where the current Civic and Civic Type R models are produced.

It currently employs around 3,000 people and creates up to 150,000 new cars per year, but will close permanently in July 2021.

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