LONDON (AP) — A Ford engine plant in Wales that employs 1,700 people is “economically unsustainable” and will close next year, the carmaker announced Thursday.

The company blamed declining sales of gasoline engines and the end of a contract with Jaguar Land Rover for the closure, due in September 2020.

Ford’s European president, Stuart Rowley, said “changing customer demand and cost disadvantages, plus an absence of additional engine models for Bridgend going forward make the plant economically unsustainable in the years ahead.”

He said there would be an “enhanced separation program,” including help for employees to get new jobs or start their own businesses.

The Bridgend plant opened in 1980 and is a major employer in Wales.

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