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CEA welcomes new automotive strategy

Rob Oliver

Trade association says new strategy for UK automotive sector could aid construction equipment industry

THE Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) and the Automotive Council have issued a new strategy document for the UK automotive sector. While the strategy concentrates heavily on motor vehicle manufacture, it also holds out the prospect of providing benefits for the construction equipment industry, according the Construction Equipment Association (CEA).

The joint UK motor industry and government automotive strategy has committed to invest well in excess of £1 billion in additional funds over the next 10 years to secure the growth and development of the vehicle and component manufacturing sector.

This new funding supports multi-billion pound investments announced in the last few years by global automotive companies to boost production levels and develop new technologies and models in the UK.

The main elements of the new strategy include:

  • Technology – the creation of an Advanced Propulsion Centre to support and enhance the UK’s expertise in research and development.
  • Inward investment – the creation of the Automotive Investment Organisation to drive UK investment by global automotive component companies.
  • Skills – an industry framework for skills and a skills roadmap, including the creation of 7,600 apprenticeships and 1,700 graduate opportunities in the automotive industry.
  • Supply chain – driving growth and competitiveness, including creating a framework with suppliers, vehicle manufacturers and banking organizations to solve the problem of financing tooling investment.
  • Low carbon – financial support to encourage consumers into lower-emission vehicles and to grow investment in the manufacture of low- and ultra-low-emission vehicles and components.
  • Business environment – establishing better cross-government relationships by including HM Treasury on the Automotive Council to ensure the UK remains an attractive place to invest.

Welcoming the strategy document, CEA chief executive Rob Oliver (pictured) said: ‘The Government, together with its industry partners, has correctly identified the need to encourage the development of the supply chain, promote inward investment and address the skills issue which has been a continuing challenge.

‘Our task now, on behalf of construction equipment manufacturers, is to ensure that the implementation of the strategy benefits our members as much as the suppliers of motor cars. The UK must continue to be a good place to make and sell construction equipment.’

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