Access to single EU market offered ‘boost to UK car production’

Recently released industry figures have revealed just how important access to the EU single market has been for UK car production last year.

The figures, produced by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), show that overall turnover was more than £71 billion in 2015 — a rise of 7.3 per cent compared to the turnover recorded in 2014. Vehicle production also rose by 5 per cent to 1.7 million units.

The figures are good news for the motor trade industry, but regardless of how the vote to leave the European Union affects dealers in the UK, it's important that they maintain adequate motor trade insurance and road risks insurance in order to protect themselves from unexpected losses.

There are around 814,000 people employed within the sector as a whole, according to the SMMT, which added that the majority of businesses said that they value the ability to employ European workers. However, the report also stated that there was a worrying skills shortage, with an estimated 5,000 vacancies still outstanding in 2016. This could be exacerbated further following the Brexit vote.

Nevertheless, car manufacturing has risen a further 10 per cent so far this year. Furthermore, car manufacturing companies and those within the supply chain have stated that they intend to invest £225 million in new jobs, machinery and product development over the next three years.

Mike Hawes, the chief executive of the SMMT, said of the figures: “UK automotive has gone from strength to strength and is now delivering record turnover, record productivity and more jobs.

“This success has been due to unrestricted access to the single market, input to EU legislation to safeguard the interests of UK automotive and the ability to recruit talent from abroad.

“Our growth depends on certainty and continued open and reciprocal access to the 100-plus markets with which the UK automotive industry so successfully trades.”