Sharon Hodgson MP

Working hard for Washington and Sunderland West.

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Sharon speaks at Annual Nissan Supply Chain Reception in Parliament


Sharon speaking at the Annual Nissan Supply Chain Reception in Parliament - 25.05.16

Copyright Office of Sharon Hodgson MP

Sharon recently hosted and spoke at a reception in Parliament which was aimed around celebrating the supply chain to Nissan UK, which employs 6,700 people at the Sunderland factory based in Sharon's constituency of Washington and Sunderland West and nearly 40,000 within its supply chain across the country. Sharon spoke about the important milestones in Nissan's history and the importance of the supply chain and Nissan to our economy.

You can read Sharon's speech here:


Thank you to everyone for coming along to Parliament today.

It’s great to see so many people here in the room to show their support for the supply chain of one of the most important companies in our country – even if I am a little bias – Nissan.

As some of you may know, I am Sharon Hodgson, MP for Washington and Sunderland West, which is home to the world-renowned Nissan Factory based in Sunderland.

Nissan is such an important employer to not only my constituency, but also the wider City of Sunderland, the North East, as well as the country as a whole.

That is why it is always important to celebrate the achievements of such an important employer and also to the many supply chain companies who work closely with Nissan.

Nissan has gone from strength to strength since it was built and started production on the Bluebird in 1986. At the time Nissan’s production was covered by 430 staff, but now employs over 8,000 people directly with a workforce of 40,000 in the supply chain.

This is an absolute testament to the hard work of both the workforces at Nissan, as well as the supply chain’s workforce in Sunderland and across the country, and shows the continued confidence to invest in such a vital industry to our economy.

Long may it continue.

There have been so many important highlights in the history of Nissan in the UK.

Two highlights include, back in in 1991 – now 25 years ago – when a second production line was launched, along with a production workshop and body shop, which saw car manufacturing jump from 100,000 to 300,000 and the second was in 2014, when the second generation Nissan Qashqai was launched at the Sunderland plant which then saw car manufacturing hit 500,000.

The Nissan Qashqai is a very special car to us here in the UK. The car is: designed in Paddington; engineered in Cranfield, and; manufactured in Sunderland.

It is a powerful testament to the innovation, production and level of skills of our car manufacturing workforce here in the UK and rivals those around the world.

It was incredible when in 2014 Nissan announced that 2 million Qashqais had rolled off the production line at Nissan in less than 10 years – an achievement which has never been seen before in the entirety of the UK’s car manufacturing history.

None of this would have happened without the strong working relationship between Nissan and its supply chain, and that is why we are all here today, to celebrate and recognise the importance of Nissan’s supply chain.

From Newport to Northampton, from Leeds to Lichfield and Bosworth to Bishop Auckland, Nissan’s supply chain spans the length and breadth of our country.

From Unipress and Gestamp – both who have factories in my constituency – to Bosch and Sony, Nissan has wide ranging involvement from across various British industrial sectors through its supply chain.

That is why it is important that we celebrate and show our support as Parliamentarians to this work. And I am glad to see so many of my fellow Parliamentary colleagues in the room this afternoon to show their support to such an important industry.

So, before I hand over to our next speaker, I want to say another thank you to everyone for coming along and I hope that you enjoy your afternoon out here on the Terrace.

Please do take advantage of the lovely weather and the views across the Thames, and please do mingle and speak to some of the MPs. If your local MP is here, do grab them and have a chat, I’m sure they would love to hear more about the work you are doing and even convince them to come and visit you sometime! MPs do love a good constituency visit and photo opportunity.

Now, I will hand over to a someone who needs no introduction to a lot of you here in the room today but for those who don’t know our next speaker, I will tell you a little bit about her, and I am of course talking about, Judith Richardson, Purchasing Vice President for Nissan Europe.

Judith oversees a team of 205 employees and plays a key role in managing the cost effective delivery of current and new vehicles being produced by Nissan she works closely with more than 4000 suppliers, a number of whom are in the room today. A feat in itself.

Again, thank you for coming along and we will now hear from Judith. 

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