JCB halts UK production

By: Chris McCullough

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  • Plant & Equipment

Coronavirus hits JCB as it stops production due to global demand slump

Shop floor workers will continue to be paid during the shut-down period

All JCB’s UK manufacturing plants have ceased production due to an unprecedented slump in global demand caused by the worldwide coronavirus pandemic.

The company is halting production for the rest of this week and the whole of next week at its nine manufacturing plants in Staffordshire, Derbyshire and Wrexham.  

JCB says shop floor employees affected by the move will be paid in full during this period. No decision has yet been taken on what happens from the week commencing Monday, March 30 and beyond.

Office staff will continue to work a 39-hour week, with many working from home, in support of the Government’s social distancing policy.

The COVID-19 pandemic hit JCB's component supply last month. Check out the story here

JCB chief executive Graeme Macdonald says the measures, while unprecedented, are "absolutely necessary" to protect the business.

"As we continue to deal with the health implications of the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become more challenging to maintain business continuity in this volatile economic climate," he says.

"JCB is a global exporter and worldwide demand for our products has dropped sharply as customers cancel orders and defer deliveries. This is not just a UK issue, it is worldwide and with countries like France, Spain and Italy going into lock-down, those key markets for construction equipment disappear overnight.

"In light of this fast-changing situation, we need to re-plan our production and, as a result, manufacturing at all UK factories will cease for the rest of this week and all of next week.

"This will allow us to take stock of the situation, re-plan our order book, prioritise products that are definitely required by customers, and ensure parts and components are reassigned to support the production of these products," he says.

JCB’s plant in Pudong, near Shanghai, ceased production last month as the impact of the pandemic initially took hold. However, after several weeks of disruption, the factory is now fully operational again.


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