My statement on the Hi-Lex closure announcement

The news that Hi-Lex will be closing its operations in Port Talbot in 2021 is a severe blow to both the workforce and the local community.  This decision will leave 125 workers and their families unsure of their future and we must do all we can to secure a strong future for them. It is such well-paid, highly skilled jobs within businesses like Hi-Lex that we need in our economy and I have asked the Welsh Government to meet with Hi-Lex to discuss what help can be given to the workers and the business in the months ahead. 

 

The decision of the board of Hi-Lex in Japan to restructure its European operations follows a downturn in the automotive sector, undoubtedly impacted upon by Brexit and global changes in the motor industry.  The changes in the car manufacturing sector that has resulted in plant closures  such as that of Honda in Swindon, are now impacting upon the supply chain and the loss of business Hi-Lex will experience has led to this profit making plant facing closure. The UK government must wake up to its responsibilities to protect and support our manufacturing industries and take action now rather than allow an important sector within the UK economy to collapse.

 

Whilst there is a commitment to no redundancies in the next 12 months there can be no guarantee of this if the company faces further financial challenges on it sales.  We need to act now and identify a strategy for attracting new investments and to growing local businesses.

David Rees
Assembly Member for Aberavon