UK business leaders support Jaguar Land Rover foreign expansion

Posted on 14 Aug 2015 by Fred Tongue

Jaguar Land Rovers decision to open a new manufacturing plant abroad will not have a negative impact on operations in the UK according to business leader.

Chairman of the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) believes that the expansion of Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) to Slovakia will help provide opportunities for firms in and around the LEP area.

Slovakia already produces a number of vehicles for large car manufacturers including Audi; Porsche; Volkswagen; Peugeot, and more.

JLR said that because of the countries strong automotive sector that made expansion to the country a more attractive proposition.

LEP chairman, Jonathan Browning commented:  “This decision underlines Jaguar Land Rover’s phenomenal growth in global markets and it is only natural they want to balance their operations across those markets.

“The great news is that despite its overseas success, Jaguar Land Rover’s roots remain firmly in Coventry and Warwickshire, which was underlined by its decision in March to buy around 40 acres at Whitley Business Park to expand its investment in research and development.”

The plans are for a factory that could produce up to 300,000 vehicles over the next decade and would also manufacture lightweight aluminium vehicles. The first cars are expected to roll off the production line in 2018. The plans are subject to a feasibility study by the Slovakian Government.

JLR's boss Dr Ralph Speth says talented people are the future for the car maker if it is to improve its technology and products
Dr Ralph Speth, CEO, JLR.

JLR also said that the expansion is part of the companies plans to become a more global business and that the first part of this process was to begin car manufacture overseas.

CEO of JLR, Dr Ralph Speth said: “The expansion of our business globally is essential to support its long-term, resilient growth. As well as creating additional capacity, it allows us to invest in the development of more new vehicles and technologies, which supports jobs in the UK.

“With its established premium automotive industry, Slovakia is an attractive potential development opportunity for us. The new factory will complement our existing facilities in the UK, China, India and the one under construction in Brazil.”