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Chuka Umunna MP, Labour’s Shadow Business Secretary, responding to Ford’s decision to close two of its plants, said: 

"Ford’s decision to cease vehicle production in the UK marks the end of an era and is a devastating blow to 1,100 Ford workers set to lose their jobs, with many more put at risk in Ford UK’s supply chain too. 

"Whereas for years ‘White van man’ has driven the iconic Ford Transit - the workhorse of British business assembled in the UK - he will now have to buy it from Turkey as a result of this announcement.

"At a time when we are looking to diversify our economy and create more skilled manufacturing jobs, this decision highlights the continuing need for the Government to implement an active industrial strategy to grow the productive sectors of our economy. 

"Ford UK’s announcement, in one of Britain’s successful and growing sectors, shows there is no room for any complacency about the need to strengthen the recovery when, even after today’s GDP figures, our economy is only just back to the same size as a year ago - twelve months of damaging flat-lining which has seen borrowing rise in the first half of this year."

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