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back to index backEUROtalk October,  2016


Nissan demands Brexit compensation for new UK investment

Carmaker fears it could face tariffs to export UK-assembled cars to EU markets in the event of a ‘hard Brexit’.

The trade association for UK carmakers has backed a warning from the boss of Nissan that Brexit threatens Britain’s vehicle manufacturing industry.

Carlos Ghosn, Nissan’s chief executive, said he could scrap a potential new investment in the UK’s biggest car plant in Sunderland if the government refuses to pledge compensation for any tariffs that may be imposed after Brexit.

Ghosn said: If I need to make an investment in the next few months and I can’t wait until the end of Brexit, then I have to make a deal with the UK government. If there are tax barriers being established on cars, you have to have a commitment for carmakers who export to Europe that there is some kind of compensation.”

Ghosn’s remarks reflect growing concern among global carmakers that Britain could be heading towards a so-called hard Brexit, which would leave them paying tariffs to export UK-assembled cars to EU markets.

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders echoed his warning and said Theresa May’s government should step in to preserve the mainly foreign-owned industry. SMMT estimates about 814,000 people rely on the sector for employment.

Mike Hawes, SMMT’s chief executive, said: The government must do all it can to maintain the competitiveness of the UK automotive sector, which has been hugely successful in boosting exports, creating jobs and generating economic growth in recent years.”

Nissan, which builds about a third of Britain’s total car output at its plant in Sunderland, is due to decide early next year on where to build its next Qashqai sport utility vehicle.

Another Japanese carmaker, Toyota, has also expressed concerns about Brexit, saying the imposition of duties would make running its English plant very, very tough”.

The result of June’s EU referendum took many investors and chief executives by surprise, triggering political and financial turmoil and the biggest ever one-day fall in sterling against the dollar.

To read entire article, please click here.

Source: The Guardian - GAI






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