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Another missed opportunity for UK plc?

Is the UK set to lose out when it comes to the fast growing electric vehicle market?

According to a report from industry group Transport and Environment (T&E) while the UK produced roughly half of all electric cars built in Europe in 2018, that figure is set to fall to just 4 per cent by 2030.

If these forecasts prove accurate - and doubts have been raised about how those figures have been pulled together- it would mean that the UK, which was among the first countries to outlaw the sale of new petrol and diesel cars, would be almost wholly reliant on imports.

The UK has set stringent emission targets but it appears that our car manufacturers are, according to the report, the least prepared in Europe.

That claim, however, has been strongly refuted by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), which represents the UK automobile industry.

According to the SMMT, the UK is ramping up its production of electric vehicles and will be able to meet the government's net zero 2030 ambitions, pointing to BMW’s plans to turn the Mini into an all-electric brand and Nissan's to expand battery production at its base in Sunderland with a new "gigafactory", as a couple of examples.

Whatever the truth, government and industry need to work hand-in-hand if we are to have a vibrant automotive industry that can take advantage of the electric revolution.

While there are plenty of ‘talks’ going on about siting gigafactories critical to the automotive industry's future here in the UK, most are still at an early stage and talk is just hot air.

Imagine, if cars could run on that then the UK would surely be a world beater!

Author
Neil Tyler

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