Belfast Telegraph

Brexit leaving investment decisions on new car models 'hanging by a thread'

Investment decisions on 15 new car models in the UK are "hanging by a thread" as industry waits for the outcome of Brexit negotiations, a report warns.

Unite said hundreds of thousands of automotive and manufacturing jobs would be at risk unless the Government secures tariff free access to the European single market.

A study by the union said key investment decisions were due over the next two years on new car models ranging from the Honda Civic to the Range Rover Sport.

Unite urged the Government to protect workers' rights when the UK leaves the EU and said unions should be involved in Brexit negotiations.

General secretary Len McCluskey said: "The UK car industry is the most productive in the EU. Yet the uncertainty of Brexit could seriously compromise the continued resurgence of this world class industry.

"Dozens of decisions, including new models to UK plants, must be made in the coming months. These crucial investment decisions will determine the future of the UK's car industry. Ministers' mixed signals on tariff free access to the single market, which consumes 80% of the cars we produce, could leave our world class industry hanging by a thread.

"While many workers voted to leave the EU, they didn't do so to be out of work or see their living standards suffer and rights at work torn up through a 'Hard Brexit'.

"The Government's commitment to an industrial strategy is welcome, but it will not get out of the starting blocks unless our manufacturing sector receives tariff free access to the single market and the assistance and commitments it needs to invest in a Brexit Britain."