The shadow Business Secretary Chuka Umunna has described the decision by Ford to cut as many as 1,400 jobs in the UK as a "devastating blow".
He told ITV News the jobs are being lost in precisely the sector that the UK needs to build on.
The leader of Southampton City Council, Richard Williams, gave this statement in response to the decision to close the Ford Transit Van factory in the city:
He added that it was important to protect the "strategically well-placed site" of the factory for "manufacturing and engineering" operations.
Workers in Ford's Transit van assembly factory in Southampton were sent home for the day after they were informed that the plant will be closing.
"Our expectation is that about 1,000 people will accept the voluntary [redundancy] offer - and to repeat, it is a voluntary offer - and therefore about 1,000 plus people will leave the company," said Ford Europe CEO Stephen Odell.
He said the company has to "reflect the economic and business conditions that they are involved in" and that the European automotive industry was "20 percent below where it was in 2007".
The Southampton Labour MP John Denham, who is also the parliamentary aide to Ed Miliband, has described Ford's decision to shut the factory that makes the Transit van as "devastating":
Business Secretary Vince Cable said:
Shadow Business Secretary Chuka Ummuna said Ford's UK job cuts reinforce Labour's stance that today's GDP figures leave no "room for complacency" on the economy:
The shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna has tweeted his reaction to Ford closing its factory in Southampton and a plant in Dagenham: