With the support of the parent company General Motors, Vauxhall is committing to the UK's automotive sector turnaround and begins September 2011 with a number of achievements.
A member of the Automotive Council and its Supply Group, Vauxhall has achieved the €200m target of new UK supply contracts, ahead of the target date of the end of 2011. The supply contracts ensure an additional €40m spent with UK suppliers per year, corresponding to a 15% overall increase in the company's UK sourcing.
Bill Parfitt, Chairman of GMUK and also the Automotive Council's Supply Group's first Chairman, comments: "UK suppliers excel in quality and overall competitiveness and I am very pleased that we have succeeded to source some of our parts originally brought in from countries such as Spain and Germany directly from the UK. It is part of Vauxhall's plan to buy British and support UK manufacturing and we are going to persevere in this direction."
The Vauxhall Astra plant at Ellesmere Port, Cheshire and Vivara Van plant at Luton, Bedfordshire have employed an extra 268 people to help satisfy demand and increasing export levels.
Ellesmere Port is running 47 jobs per hour, with the Vauxhall Astra Sport Tourer is the predominant model, which is being produced for all of Europe, as well as Chile, South Africa and Israel. 92% of of Sports Tourer models produced will be exported. By the end of August 2011, 83,338 Sports Tourers have been produced on the production line, running two shifts in General Assembly and 3 shifts in press, paint and body shop.
The Luton van plant, which will be responsible for building the next generation Vauxhall Vivaro from 2014, is currently running 23 jobs per hour on two shift. Around 65% of its product is exported to Europe.
39 apprentices have also started across the different Vauxhall sites in Cheshire and Bedfordshire, undertaking a comprehensive programme delivered in collaboration with West Cheshire College and Bedford College. Vauxhall apprentices focus on engineering, maintenance, business administration and motor technology in order to develop their skills over two-year.
"Young trainees are an important element within our organisation and of outstanding value to the UK automotive sector," said Phil Millward, Vauxhall's HR Director. "Together with over 100 undergraduates who started this summer in our organisation, our apprentices are an integral part of building Vauxhall's future and we are confident that many will grow to take on positions within the company's leadership of tomorrow."
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