An Automotive Investment Organisation (IAO) will be set up to attract more overseas investment into UK’s car manufacturing sector.
Led by the former chairman of Ford in Britain Joe Greenwell and with a budget of £3m for the next two years, IAO will seek to implement the Automotive Industrial Strategy, which is expected to be released shortly.
The automotive industry is one of 11 sectors that have been identified by the government as key to future growth and prosperity. The undertaking follows the 2012 report of the Automotive Council, which stated that a potential market worth £3bn exists for UK suppliers and overseas companies looking to set up or expand manufacturing facilities in the UK.
"On average, only a third of the parts that go into cars manufactured here are sourced from the UK. We know that global manufacturers in the UK want to buy more from the UK”, Business Secretary Vince Cable said.
During the last two years, there has been significant investment from global automotive manufacturers in the UK, the AIO’s goal is to further foster this development.
"Attracting inward investment by global suppliers and closing the £3bn sourcing gap in the UK is a strategic priority for the long-term success of domestic automotive manufacturing", said Mike Baunton, the interim chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).
Joe Greenwell, with his more than 40 years of experience in the automotive sector, is believed to be the right man for the job. “As head of the Automotive Investment Organisation, my job will be to promote why the UK is a great supply chain investment opportunity, increase R&D investment and strengthen our relationships overseas with global manufacturers”, he said.
The news will be announced today at a London summit organised by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.