Peugeot, Citroen and Vauxhall close all European factories due to coronavirus
All Groupe PSA plants to shut down until March 27 in bid to contain the spread of coronavirus
The shutdown will be gradual, with the first closures being enacted today (16 March) at the firm’s Mulhouse plant in France, and Madrid production facility in Spain. Other plants will close over the next four days, with the Vauxhall plant in Luton, and the PSA Trnava Plant in Slovakia, being the last to close, on March 19.
The PSA closure follows similar news from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, which announced the temporary closure of the majority of its European operations. It also casts doubt on discussions underway between Vauxhall and the UK Government that the Ellesmere Port plant could give over factory space to make medical ventilators, more of which are needed for the treatment of coronavirus victims.
A statement released by Groupe PSA said: “Due to the acceleration observed in recent days of serious COVID-19 cases close to certain production sites, supply disruptions from major suppliers, as well as the sudden decline in the automobile markets, the Chairman of the Executive Board with the members of the crisis unit, decided the principle of the closure of the vehicle production sites, according to the following schedule and until March 27.”
The firm added: “The site management teams will implement the site closure procedures locally, which will be done in coordination with the social partners. Groupe PSA remind that until then, compliance with the barrier measures, going beyond the recommendations of the health authorities on the sites, are the best protection to prevent the spread of the virus.”