NEW YORK – Japanese automaker Nissan Motor Co. has drafted a contingency plan to focus on its Sunderland plant in the U.K. and cut European production if a hard Brexit leads to tariffs on car imports from the continent, the Financial Times reported, citing two people involved in the discussions.
The plan, which was drawn up before Makoto Uchida was named as the new chief executive officer in December, also foresees the closing of Nissan’s plants in Barcelona, Spain, and in France.
The automaker denied the existence of the contingency plans, according to a spokesman for Nissan Europe quoted by the Financial Times. “We’ve modeled every possible ramification of Brexit and the fact remains that our entire business both in the U.K. and in Europe is not sustainable in the event of WTO tariffs,” he said.
In a speech on Monday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson plans to say he is prepared to quit talks over the U.K.’s future trade relationship with the European Union if he doesn’t get what he wants, according to a U.K. official. Brussels negotiators are set to publish their own mandate the same day.