Thousands of manufacturing jobs will be safeguarded after car maker Jaguar Land Rover announced plans to build a range of electric vehicles in Britain.
The cars will be manufactured at the company’s plant in Castle Bromwich, West Midlands.
Jaguar said the move will help secure the jobs of 2,700 workers at the plant.
But the news follows an announcement in January when the company said it would cut 4,500 jobs with most coming from the UK. Jaguar also axed 1,500 jobs in 2018.
Jaguar boss Ralf Speth said on Friday: “The future of mobility is electric and, as a visionary British company, we are committed to making our next generation of zero-emission vehicles in the UK.
“We are co-locating our electric vehicle manufacture, electronic drive units and battery assembly to create a powerhouse of electrification in the Midlands.”
Steve Turner, Unite’s assistant general secretary, used the news to urge the Tory leadership contenders to take no-deal Brexit off the table in a bid to secure the future of other workers at car manufacturers.
Business Secretary Greg Clark said: “Today’s announcement is a vote of confidence in the UK automotive industry – protecting thousands of skilled jobs.
“It reflects our determination for the UK to be at the forefront of the development and manufacturing of the next generation of electric vehicles.”
He added that the news “recognises the strength of the excellent workforce at Castle Bromwich and acknowledges the efforts of many parties”.
Yet despite Clark’s support, the British car industry warned this week that the government’s end of subsidies for electric cars was behind a decline in demand.
Sales of cars with alternative fuels, including battery electric vehicles, were down 11.8% in June compared with the same month last year, the first decline since 2017, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.