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EU Block Exemption and the International Supply Chain Implications for a Group of Key Automotive Manufacturers

Fraser, N and Rodrigues, M and Fraser, J (2006) EU Block Exemption and the International Supply Chain Implications for a Group of Key Automotive Manufacturers. In: 33rd AIB-UK Conference, 07 April 2006 - 08 April 2006, Manchester, UK.

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Abstract

This study explores the effects of EU policy on Block Exemption within the European Automotive industry. The approach taken was to gain exclusive access through industry insiders to four key car manufacturers with operations in the UK but European aspirations, namely, Honda, Audi, Toyota and the now defunct MGRover. The opinions gained from senior management within these companies combined with a study of the European policy and current Supply Chain business thinking presented some compelling findings. Although there are differences between the four companies in their approach to this Block Exemption legislation, there are also some interesting although perhaps unsurprising protectionism views of the established position of these businesses. Certainly one of the key battle lines to be drawn going forward will be with the spare parts and after market where the competition for vital post-sales servicing revenues will intensify over the coming years, perhaps loosening what has been a domain controlled absolutely by the manufacturers. The long term implications and strategy adopted by the manufacturers may yet have the EU reaching for the rulebook again.

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