United Kingdom
South East; Hampshire and Isle of Wight; Southampton
Location of affected unit(s)
Manufacture Of Tobacco Products
Manufacture Of Tobacco Products
12 - Manufacture of tobacco products
New offshoring locations
Singapore, Korea

660 jobs
Number of planned job losses
Job loss
Announcement Date
1 June 2005
Employment effect (start)
Foreseen end date


British American Tobacco (BAT) the cigarette maker is moving production from its main UK factory to the Far East, raising fears of hundreds of job cuts. Production of 6.2 billion cigarettes is being transferred to factories in Korea and Singapore by summer 2005. Unions described it as a 'devastating blow' and vowed to fight job losses at the Southampton factory, which employs about 660 workers in manufacturing. Allan Short, BAT's head of UK and Ireland operations, said: 'This represents a significant loss of volume in Southampton, but the benefits of the localisation for our customers are clear. Costs of production in the Far East are far lower and the factories in Singapore and Korea are much closer to the destination markets.' The Southampton factory manufactures cigarettes including Dunhill, Rothmans and Lucky Strike, is employing more than half of BAT's UK workforce of around 1,200. In 2003, BAT had closed its Darlington plant with the loss of 490 employees.


  • 1 June 2005: BBC News


Eurofound (2005), British American Tobacco, Offshoring/Delocalisation in United Kingdom, factsheet number 61675, European Restructuring Monitor. Dublin, https://restructuringeventsprod.azurewebsites.net/restructuring-events/detail/61675.