The case for quitting the EU keeps getting stronger

Far from being a reason to remain part of the European Union, UK car manufacturers' performance shows why we must open ourselves up to trade with the world

by Douglas Carswell MP on 30 May 2013 08:12

UK car manufacturing, we are often told, is one of the reasons why we must remain in the European Union. Were Britain to leave the trade block, it is darkly hinted, all those foreign-owned car firms would quit the UK.

Is that really so?

Tata-owned Jaguar Land Rover seems to be doing rather well. The firm has just announced record profits, and the Indian owners are now looking to invest a further £2.75 billion.

Why is Jaguar Land Rover doing so well? Because it is achieving phenomenal export performance, most notably outside the EU. Sales to China, for example, are up 48 percent.

Jaguar Land Rover's £2.75 billion new investment is not coming to the UK simply to produce cars for a stagnant European market. The investment is being made to produce cars for the world.

Honda, by contrast, which does tend to make cars in Britain for the European market, has a somewhat different experience. With European car sales down 7 percent last year's, Honda and others have been cutting back production and investment.

A pound - or a yen or rupee - invested in UK car manufacturing yields better returns if invested to sell to the world, not to the stagnant Eurozone. 

Far from being a reason to remain part of the European Union, UK car manufacturers' performance shows why we must open ourselves up to trade with the world. That cannot be achieved from within an unreformable Brussels-run trade block.  

This blog originally appeared on talkcarswell.com

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