Bethan Sayed, Plaid Cymru AM for South Wales West, said Plaid Cymru will fight any announcement that Ford will close its Bridgend plant.
“If this is true, it will have devastating impact on Bridgend, the region and the wider Welsh economy. The Bridgend plant is a hallmark of the Welsh industrial landscape and a flagship anchor company with a highly skilled and specialised workforce. There’s no disguising or minimising the damage a closure will do.
“We must fight this closure and show that the Bridgend plant can be viable. We have to support the workforce in opposing this closure. Plaid Cymru is ready to work with others to safeguard the best interests of the workers and to find a way to support them.
“If this closure goes ahead, it will be clear that the so-called “Ford Family” mantra is a sham. Indeed, the workforce has been left hanging on for years without an ounce of clarity from the company on their future. It is my understanding that the company has not been co-operative, even when the workforce has gone above and beyond in showing their willingness to be flexible to assist management. Management have a lot to answer for at this point.
“There are also some big questions for the Welsh Government here too.
“There has been uncertainty for some years at the plant. Plaid Cymru has long called for clarity on the situation at Bridgend. In May 2017 I hosted union representatives along with other local AMs, including the then First Minister Carwyn Jones, where a discussion was had on the prospects for the company’s future. The then First Minister assured everyone at the meeting that the Welsh Government would continue to work with the company to find a sustainable long term solution and assist with diversifying. So what did the Welsh Government know? Were they aware this was going to happen when previous questions have been asked by myself and others in the Senedd? What engagement and work did they carry out with Ford over the last few years in relation to the Bridgend plant?
“As always, Plaid Cymru’s top priority is our commitment to the workforce, saving jobs and putting the high skills of our people to their best use. I reiterate our intention to fight this closure, and we stand ready to work with others to offer support and ideas in getting to the best outcome for the whole workforce”