Jaguar Land Rover handed £1m grant for electric car development
Jaguar Land Rover has received a £1m Government grant to help it develop state-of-the-art electric cars.
A grant of £1,103,392 will help pay for a £2million project involving JLR, which operates factories in Birmingham and Solihull, and engineers Bladon Jets, based new Shrewsbury.
The cash was announced by Business Secretary Lord Mandelson, as he launched the Government’s new business strategy designed to help rebuild the economy following the recession.
Lord Mandelson warned that old jobs which had been lost might never come back, even once the recession was over. Instead, the Government was backing new forms of industry, he said.
In a statement to MPs, the Business Secretary said: “The recovery is only the beginning of how we are going to pay our way in the global economy. The jobs of the future won’t be the same as those in the past.
“We will turn new technologies into jobs, like those in digital and biotechnologies. We will commercialise the output of our hugely successful science and research base. We will turn low carbon into business and employment opportunities.
“None of this is going to happen with government simply standing on the sidelines. Other governments are actively investing in their industrial strength. We have to do the same.”
The JLR funding is part of a £12 million grant announced to help firms develop low carbon cars, announced as part of the strategy. It will be used to help develop lightweight electric engines.
Other projects to receive funding include research into cutting the amount of pollution from diesel engines, involving JLR again and oil giant Shell, and a project to design smaller truck engines, involving Birmingham University and Staffordshire manufacturers J C Bamford Excavators Ltd.
Birmingham University also will be a partner in a new research centre to be established at Brunel University in London, which will develop ways of using and recycling metal. This is designed to save costs and cut pollution.
But Conservatives said manufacturing had declined under Labour, with output falling by ten per cent since 1997.
Shadow Business Secretary Ken Clarke said: “It is a bit rich for Labour to talk now about a ‘growth strategy’ reviving manufacturing when output has fallen during their period of office to its lowest level in almost 20 years.
“Manufacturing output was steadily rising during the last five years of the previous Conservative government and now it has gone back to its lowest level since 1992.”