UK auto sector renaissance driven by £40bn low carbon investment

15 July 2014 #SMMT News

The Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership has today published a major new report showing how the UK automotive sector has been revitalised by consistently applied low carbon policy.

The report shows that about £40bn has been invested in the UK since 2003, specifically in the low carbon automotive sector.  In the same 10-year window, the turnover of the sector has increased by similar levels, and also saw a 10% increase in UK automotive exports. The report says the investment has gone into at least 291 identified low and ultra-low carbon manufacturing capacity and R&D projects.

The broad industry survey, supplemented by in-depth interviews with senior executives, showed that a consistent and sustained policy approach can produce both ‘green’ results and growth. The link between consistently applied policy and a ‘win-win’ in terms of investment and emissions performance was validated by the survey involving over 120 senior industry and stakeholder respondents and carried out by E4tech and the Centre for Automotive Industry Research at Cardiff Business School.

The renaissance in the UK automotive sector has coincided with the establishment of a more active, collaborative industrial policy driven by the need to cut carbon emissions from the sector and protect against climate change, all in the context of encouraging industrial growth through a sustainable business environment.

Speaking at the launch of the report, Andy Eastlake, LowCVP Managing Director,  said, “The emphasis of policy makers on environmental achievements and ‘green growth’ has bolstered the foundations of the UK automotive sector.  Experience over the last 10 years shows that a consistent policy approach based on collaboration between all stakeholders can deliver dividends. This represents the first strides on the road to meeting the environmental imperative of decarbonising road transport by 2050.

“There are, however, no grounds for complacency and the job is far from done. We urgently need to repeat the success seen in our passenger car and bus sectors, in all aspects of road transport such as the truck and commercial vehicle industries – and of course the supply of low carbon fuels and energy to power all forms of transport.”

The full report and an Executive Summary of: “Investing in the low carbon journey: Lessons from the first decade of UK policy on the road to 2050” can be found here.

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