April 21, 2024

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“Jaguar Land Rover” owner to invest £4 billion in UK battery plants

Tata, the owner of “Jaguar Land Rover,” has confirmed its plans to construct a flagship electric car battery factory in the UK. The new plant, located in Somerset, is expected to generate around 4,000 jobs within the UK and create additional employment opportunities in the wider supply chain. Tata has committed £4 billion to the project, with the government reportedly offering substantial subsidies, potentially worth hundreds of millions of pounds. This development is considered the most significant investment in the UK automotive industry since Nissan’s arrival in the 1980s.

The forthcoming gigafactory will be among the largest in Europe and will specialise in manufacturing batteries for “Jaguar Land Rover” vehicles, including the Range Rover, Defender, and Jaguar models. The intention is also to supply batteries to other car manufacturers. Production at the factory is scheduled to commence in 2026.

Tata has been engaged in negotiations for several months to secure state aid for the project. While there were alternative sites under consideration, including one in Spain, the company ultimately chose the UK location. The precise details of the subsidy package have not been disclosed, but it is expected to involve cash grants, energy cost discounts, and funding for training and research.

The Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, has welcomed the investment, stating that it will bolster the country’s economy, enhance its expertise in battery technology, and create thousands of jobs. Sarah Olney, a Member of Parliament and the Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson, praised the move as a positive step towards rectifying the historical lack of government investment in the southwest region.

This battery plant represents Tata’s first facility outside of India and is anticipated to facilitate the transition of the UK’s car manufacturing sector from traditional petrol and diesel vehicles to electric vehicles. The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders has hailed this investment as crucial for the UK at a pivotal moment for the industry.