Industry leaders meet the government over rescue package
20 May 2009

Paul Everitt, head of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), has told the government a lack of support by banks is limiting its industry rescue package.

Industry chiefs have this week been called to give evidence at a House of Commons Business and Enterprise Committee review of automotive support packages.

Everitt believes that the government’s support package, the Automotive Assistance Programme (AAP), is confusing for some companies and it has been difficult to gain access to certain information.

The SMMT said that so far no guaranteed loan has been approved and the industry has a number of concerns.

One of the main problems is an unwillingness by banks to invest in the automotive sector, it claims.

“Government support schemes, particularly the Automotive Assistance Programme and the scrappage incentive scheme are positive responses to direct requests from industry,” said Everitt.

“Important lessons about the flexibility and accessibility of the Automotive Assistance Programme are being learnt by industry and government. However, industry remains concerned that a reluctance by banks to provide direct support to industry is limiting the effectiveness of the programme and its benefit to companies in the supply chain.”

The inquiry will run for three days and will seek evidence from Richard Parry-Jones, chair of the New Automotive Innovation and Growth Team, GM, Jaguar Land Rover, Leyland, Multipart, the North West Regional Development Agency and Toyota.

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