By Michael Smith
Trade and Industry Secretary Lord Young has set 1992 as the date for selling the state owned vehicle manufacturer Austin Rover into private hands. Lord Young toured Austin Rover’s main works at Longbridge, Birmingham, yesterday and said he would be receiving details about the sell-off from AR chairman Graham Day next year. However, with 1992 as the last date before the Government can call an election, it appears that privatisation of Austin Rover will have to be completed ahead of Lord Young’s new target date, or be saved for a fourth term of Mrs Thatcher. Lord Young said he was confident the company would be profitable and attractive to investors by the time the business was ready for privatisation.
But as Lord Young was speaking, Austin Rover was losing production on its Rover 200 lines because of a walkout by 150 assembly line workers.