Auto industry calls for support

19 September 2011

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19 September 2011 | Adam Leach

The Society of Motor Manufacturers andTraders (SMMT) will lobby politicians in the coming weeks to promote the UK auto supply chain’s importance in driving economic recovery.

In a statement released today, the SMMT revealed it would be speaking at a series of fringe events held around the political party conferences over the next three weeks. In particular, the industry group will be promoting the UK sector’s efforts in increasing sustainability and calling for parliament to provide stronger incentives.

SMMT chief executive Paul Everitt said: “The industry has demonstrated great strength and resilience and this has been rewarded by new commitments to UK facilities from global vehicle manufacturers. There are now real opportunities to strengthen the UK supply base and bring new investment into fast-emerging, ultra-low carbon technologies. Targeted tax incentives and support programmes can help trigger the private sector investment needed to kick start growth.” 

In its latest sustainability report, published earlier this year, SMMT explained that through sharing best practice, providing specialist training and increasing engagement between buyers and suppliers, the industry is working towards becoming more sustainable. Companies have been encouraging suppliers to sign up to Prince Charles' carbon monitoring scheme, the Mayday Network, conducting monthly reviews with suppliers where financial, safety and environmental performance is presented.

The industry also increased the use of recycled packaging and is using more short-haul shipments in order to reduce the distances cars are driven to reach their final destination. For example, by increasing the number of ports used in Spain from three to six, road-based delivery emissions were cut by 29 per cent.

SMMT will present a position paper on the need for parliament to support the sector to party supporters attending the Liberal Democrat, Conservative and Labour party conferences.

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