2nd March 2011: UK Business Secretary Dr. Vince Cable today toured Jaguar Land Rover's Halewood Operations facility on Merseyside to experience first-hand the positive impact the imminent launch of the new Range Rover Evoque will have on the UK economy.
Dr Cable's visit to Jaguar Land Rover came as the company announced more than £2 billion worth of supply contracts for the Range Rover Evoque, awarded to more than 40 companies in the UK. The contracts follow the completion of a global competitive tendering exercise on component-sourcing for the vehicle, which will arrive in dealerships this year. More than 100,000 customers globally have already formally registered interest in the Evoque.
During a tour of the facility, Dr. Cable met with key plant personnel and new apprentices who have recently joined the Halewood team that will build the Evoque. Jaguar Land Rover announced in February that these 1500 new recruits will be trained up to an Intermediate (Level 2) Apprenticeship.
Dr Cable also visited Merseyside-based component supplier International Automotive Components (IAC), which is one of the companies that has been awarded a contract by Jaguar Land Rover.
Business Secretary Vince Cable said: "Jaguar Land Rover's news that it's awarding £2 billion worth of contracts to businesses in the UK to supply components for the Evoque shows that the UK automotive supply chain is capable of winning major contracts and creating vital jobs in the UK."
Jaguar Land Rover CEO, Dr. Ralf Speth said: "Jaguar Land Rover is a key player within the UK economy. We are the largest investor in automotive research and development and engineering in this country and as today's announcement shows, we generate billions of pounds of economic activity here every year. Alongside the 1,500 new jobs created in Halewood to support the launch of the new Evoque, Jaguar Land Rover is investing in advanced research, design and technical innovation with key strategic partners which together with today's £2bn of contract announcements will mean the creation of thousands more skilled jobs in the UK automotive supply chain."
Evoque is the first of many new products that Jaguar Land Rover will introduce in the next five years, which together will generate billions of pounds in investment in the UK.
"The billions being spent on Evoque is just the start, with 40 significant product actions coming over the next five years," added Speth. "This will mean a high level of investment by us in the future and represents a tremendous opportunity for UK suppliers to work in partnership with Jaguar Land Rover to really strengthen the supplier base in this country."
The successful companies supporting the launch of the Evoque are located throughout the UK and include amongst others International Automotive Components, Johnson Controls and Magna International on Merseyside; McKecknie and Kostal in Yorkshire; and Sertec, Walsall Pressings and Kautex Unipart in the West Midlands.
In addition to contracts for component supply, many other companies in the UK will provide facilities and services to support the production of the new Range Rover Evoque.
"The UK's automotive supply base has proved once again that it is truly world class," said Ian Harnett, Jaguar Land Rover's Director of Purchasing. "We demand the highest standards from our suppliers in order to satisfy our customers' expectations, and this attention to detail is reflected in our competitive tender process.
"We focus on many aspects of supplier capability, including technology, quality, materials, environmental performance, efficiency and cost. It is testament to the excellence of companies in this country and their highly skilled employees, that 50 percent of the component business announced today is with businesses in the UK.
"The Range Rover Evoque is a brand new model in our line-up, so every vehicle we build is incremental volume for us and our suppliers, which is also good news for employment across the industry."
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