The Labour Party has announced they will support electric vehicle (EV) manufacturing in the UK if they win the next general election. This will include a £2 billion investment into the industry that it says will support £30 billion in growth in the country.
This will include developing eight new battery gigafactories that could power more than 1.8 million cars. These factories will be located in the West Midlands, the North East, the North West and the South West.
Labour plans to accelerate the roll-out of public charging points to make it easier to own an electric car. Plus, they aim to make the UK a clean-energy superpower by 2030 with net-zero carbon electricity, lowering UK electricity costs which is a key barrier to UK car industry competitiveness.
During a visit to Warwick Manufacturing Group, which invests in skills and innovation in the electric vehicle industry, three members of the party; Louise Haigh – Shadow Transport Secretary, Ed Miliband – Shadow Secretary of State of Climate Change and Jonathan Reynolds – Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, called on the Conservatives to back the plan. The trio warned that, under the Conservatives, the UK risks losing the race to build the electric vehicle revolution here in Britain.
One of the UK’s leading car manufacturers, Jaguar Land Rover, reportedly warned they may locate battery production in Spain without support in the UK. Plus, Make UK’s chief executive warned that the current government’s lack of strategy for the industry has left it in a “last chance” state.
Louise Haigh MP, Shadow Transport Secretary, said: “Our world-class car industry can lead the way, but under the Conservative’s we are losing the race to build the electric vehicle revolution here in Britain.
“Labour will turbocharge electric vehicle manufacturing and bring good jobs back to Britain’s industrial heartlands. We will invest in eight new battery plants, and lower sky-high electric costs hampering British industry with our plans for zero-carbon power. And we will accelerate the roll-out of charging points, to give motorists confidence to make the switch.
“Labour’s vision is clear – instead of shipping jobs overseas as we have done for decades, we want to win the race for the industries of the future, and create good jobs here in Britain.”
The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), one of the largest and most influential trade associations in the UK, has called for greater government support for the electric vehicle industry. It says investment in the industry and supporting battery production in the UK are key to the electric revolution and being able to hit the targeted ban on the sales of internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles by 2030.