Currently reading: Government aid scheme blasted
£2.3 billion Automotive Assistance Programme hasn't paid out since January

A government scheme set up to help UK car makers is yet to give aid to a single company, a committee of MPs has revealed.

The £2.3 billion Automotive Assistance Programme (AAP) was set up in January to provide funds for investment in future green technologies.

However, no money has been given out, and the Business, Innovation and Skills select committee has described the failure as a "wasted opportunity".

The Department for Business, which is administering the AAP, hit back, saying it was already working with 10 firms on projects worth about £2 billion through the scheme.

A spokesman for the department said: "It is important to understand that the AAP is about long-term investment projects, rather than short-term rescue.

"We have to work at the pace demanded by the companies and also have to consider the best interests of the taxpayer."

Critics of the scheme have said that its conditions are too rigid to help many firms develop future technologies.

Peter Luff, chairman of the select committee, said: "When it was announced, AAP represented a genuine opportunity to help the automotive industry, but it is now December and not a single loan or loan guarantee has been made.

"It is up to the government to prove us wrong, but they must ensure that funds are released to companies very quickly."

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Uncle Mellow 15 December 2009

Re: Government aid scheme blasted

Widescreen wrote:
it makes you wonder why they feel the need to go abroad.

To get away from Mandelson and Brown maybe...

kdwilcox 15 December 2009

Re: Government aid scheme blasted

Why all the fuss?every thing that Mandleson talks

about is nothing but hot air and bullsh@t.

Its all ways been the same.

shortbread 15 December 2009

Re: Government aid scheme blasted

A reason that the UK Govt. takes one to two years to hammer through a deal is too poor an excuse to warrant most manufacturers having any faith in Govt. support. The speed at which most banks were bailed out and the continuing support they recieve shows that if wanted, things can happen in much shorter time frames.

Mandleson has done a lot of work to ensure that enough headlines & photo ops are made so that he ends up looking like the saviour of the U.K Auto industry. ECC arent the first electric car makers to withdraw, Tata have also cancelled their Electric car production plans in the U.K when the Govt. withdrew its promised £10 million loan.

If he cant keep his word why shout out in the first place. Every time a question is asked regarding the Auto industry he blabbers about future technology this and green technology that, when actually hes done F**K all.