BMW Global has taken the decision to pause production at its facilities in Europe and South Africa. Here's all you need to know.
The reason behind the shut down is, you guessed it, COVID-19. As this pandemic has reached global proportions, the best bet is to self isolate and avoid being in large groups of people. BMW announced it will be shutting down its plants and we have comment from both BMW CEO Oliver Zipse and locally, BMW SA.
“We take our responsibility seriously, both when it comes to ensuring the protection and health of our employees and to achieving the best possible balance in terms of profitability,” CEO Oliver Zipse said in a statement on Wednesday. “Our production is geared towards sales development forecasts – and we are adjusting our production volumes flexibly in line with demand. Since yesterday: We began to shut down our European and Rosslyn automotive plants, which will close by the end of the week. The interruption of production for the mentioned plants is currently planned to run until April 19.”
We reached out to BMW SA's Manager Business Communications, who replied with a statement. "With global demand in the car market expected to drop, the BMW Group is responding by adjusting production well in advance and using its broad spectrum of flexibility tools. Today, we will start to shut down production (and) by the end of the week at our car plants in Europe and at Plant Rosslyn. The shutdowns are initially scheduled to last until 19 April 2020. After that, we will continue as the situation requires. The operation of our engine and component locations - as well as our international automotive plants - will be decided in the next few days. This will depend on the development of demand. Initially, the flexibility instruments agreed upon by the company will apply to the employees concerned."