Government letter reveals planned £80m Nissan support package

  • Government letter reveals planned £80m Nissan support package

Government letter reveals planned £80m Nissan support package

The auto giant announced in 2016 that it planned to build its X-Trail model in Sunderland, but will now assemble it instead at Nissan's global production hub in Kyushu, Japan.

The EU insists that the current deal "remains the best and only way to ensure an orderly withdrawal", and German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said on Sunday that "if the British want to avoid a disorderly Brexit, our offer is on the table".

Nissan has not exclusively attributed its decision to Brexit, saying that new emissions standards and the change in the diesel market as other contributing factors.

Nissan has made a decision to build the new model of its X-Trail SUV in Japan instead of at its United Kingdom plant in Sunderland - a major blow to the region's economy. The company also said it is increasing spending on new powertrains for future European vehicles.

Nissan employs 7,000 people at the Sunderland plant - its largest in Europe - which has produced cars since 1986. Nissan's executive vice president for manufacturing and supply change management, Hideyuki Sakamoto, pointed out that: "A model like X-Trail is manufactured in multiple locations globally and can therefore be re-evaluated based on changes to the business environment".

Yesterday Nissan confirmed that it has reversed a decision to build the X-Trail model at its Sunderland plant, reneging on a plan it announced - to much ministerial acclaim - in 2016.

The timing of the announcement comes just two days after an EU-Japan free trade agreement kicked in, which includes the European Union's commitment to removing tariffs of 10 percent on imported Japanese cars.

Clark said the government would "vigorously pursue continued access to the European market as an objective in future negotiations", adding that: "In any circumstances, the government will ensure that the United Kingdom continues to be one of the most competitive locations for automotive and other advanced manufacturing, within Europe and globally, including sites such as Sunderland which are key to the economy of the North East of England".

BRITISH Prime Minister Theresa May said on Sunday she would be "armed with a fresh mandate and new ideas" when she next meets European Union negotiators over her Brexit deal.

"Unite will continue to press for further long-term guarantees over future investment and new models to secure the site's future for generations to come", said acting national officer for the automotive sector Steve Bush.

"Should it be a hard Brexit, I would not be surprised if also the decision to produce the Juke and the Qashqai might be re-examined", he told AFP.

Nissan has become the latest corporate big-hitter to slash investment in the face of heightened economic uncertainty and a potential no-deal Brexit.