By Marcus Leach
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and Business Secretary Vince Cable have welcomed Jaguar Land Rover’s (JLR) announcement that it plans to create 750 jobs at a new engine plant in Wolverhampton.
This project will bring a significant economic boost to the West Midlands with an investment of £355 million and will support the development of high value manufacturing and skills in the UK. It is also likely that the project will create many more UK supply chain jobs.
The Government is supporting JLR’s project through the ‘Grant for Business Investment’ scheme which is providing up to £10 million. They also recently announced that the proposed site of the new engine plant - known as the i54 site - will be part of one of the new Enterprise Zones set up specifically to boost local growth and attract new businesses.
“Jaguar Land Rover’s decision to build its new engine plant in Wolverhampton is fantastic news," Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said.
“It means over 700 new jobs for local people, an investment of over £300 million in the West Midlands and recognition of the expertise in the British workforce and manufacturing sector.
“Growing our economy has to be the number one priority for Britain, and the Government is not sitting on its hands. With initiatives like the Regional Growth Fund, putting up to £10 million into this new plant and Enterprise Zones boosting growth across the country, we’re making the UK a better place to invest and do business.”
Business Secretary Vince Cable said the decision to base the plant in the UK was a huge boost to UK manufacturing.
“JLR choosing Wolverhampton for its new engine plant in the face of tough international competition is a tremendous boost for manufacturing in the UK and the West Midlands in particular.
“This announcement sends out strong signals to potential inward investors across the world and is a huge vote of confidence in our successful automotive sector in the UK and the skills and expertise in our workforce.
“The Government’s support for this project shows we are committed to the ongoing success of UK manufacturing and the UK automotive industry, ensuring the UK remains one of the top destinations for inward investment.”
This investment is just one of a number of ways in which Government and industry are working together to grow the UK's competitiveness and performance.
As part of the plan for Growth, the Government has also announced a range of measures to achieve strong, sustainable and balanced growth. These measures include:
- creating new Enterprise Zones to inject new growth into local economies.
- The zones will support economic development and create over 30,000 new jobs by 2015, providing benefits including business rate discounts and streamlined planning processes;
- creating the most competitive business tax system in the developed world, making Britain one of the best places in Europe to start, finance and grow a business;
- cutting red tape;
- boosting investment and exports to rebalance the economy;
- stimulating business growth across England through the Regional Growth Fund;
- making a more educated workforce that is the most flexible in Europe;
- and creating the biggest number of apprenticeships this country has ever seen.
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