Hundreds Of Jobs Created As Toyota Announces Increase In UK Production

Toyota Manufacturing UK will increase production at its vehicle manufacturing plant at Burnaston in Derbyshire creating nearly 1,000 new jobs.

It will be the first time in Toyota’s history that a third shift is operated in a vehicle manufacturing plant. This move will boost annual production volume of New Avensis and Corolla at Burnaston from 220,000 to around 270,000 vehicles per year.

The introduction of a three-shift system, scheduled for the second quarter of 2004, will see an additional 1,000 new jobs created across all production areas at the Derbyshire plant. Recruitment for the new positions will start in mid 2003.

The move from two to three work shifts at the plant will increase the record £1.7 billion already invested by Toyota Motor Corporation into its UK manufacturing operations over the past decade.

The increase in production will lead to improvements in capacity utilisation and is expected to benefit Toyota’s profitability in Europe.

Since start of production in 1992 Toyota has built over 1.3 million vehicles at Burnaston and over 1.1 million engines at its engine plant at Deeside in North Wales. Currently employing 4,600 Members (employees) Toyota’s UK plants are rated as among the most efficient production plants in Europe.

In January 2003 Toyota Manufacturing UK started production of the all new Avensis which will become the first European built Toyota to be exported to Japan later this year.

The new Avensis was recently rated as the safest car ever, recording the highest ever score for safety by the European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP).

Bryan Jackson, Deputy Managing Director of Toyota Manufacturing UK said: "The increase of production in the UK represents a further endorsement of the commitment of our members to building quality vehicles for our customers in Europe and later this year in Japan.

"The move to three shifts next year will enable us to offer 1,000 new career opportunities for the region and industry as we look to recruit people who will help us to produce vehicles to support Toyota’s continued European growth."

The production increase, in line with Toyota’s philosophy of building cars where the customers are, forms part of Toyota’s plans to increase production capacity across Europe in line with increased customer demand for its products.

In the first quarter of 2003 Toyota sold an all time record 212,069 units in Europe – an increase of 4% over the first quarter of 2002. Toyota’s European market share for the first quarter reached 4.6% up from 4.5% in the same period last year.

Toyota has set a 2003 sales goal of 790,000 units in Europe, up 4.5% from the 755,633 units sold last year. The company expects that its 2005 objective of selling 800,000 units in Europe by 2005 might be achieved earlier than anticipated.

Published 20 May 2003 Melanie Carter

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