London — Britain’s economy contracted sharply in April after the biggest decline in car production since records began, as manufacturers were unable to reverse closures planned for Britain’s expected departure from the EU.

Early in 2019, many motor manufacturers had announced temporary shutdowns in Britain for April, anticipating trade disruption around the time Britain was due to leave the EU on March 29. In the event, Prime Minister Theresa May delayed departure with just days to go and subsequently set a new date of October 31, but that was too late for businesses to change their plans. ..

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as articles from our international business news partners; ProfileData financial data; and digital access to the Sunday Times and Sunday Times Daily.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now