Tata Motors reassures UK PM May on JLR: report
24 December 2018
Tata Motors, the owners of iconic British brand Jaguar Land Rover, has reportedly assured Prime Minister Theresa May of the company’s commitment to keep investing in the business and safeguard the interest of Britain’s automotive industry despite the expected post-Brexit troubles.
In a letter written to the British prime minister, Tata Sons chairman Natarajan Chandrasekaran has reassured the UK government of the Tata Group’s plans to keep investing in JLR, according a report in The Sunday Times.
Quoting sources, the UK newspaper said Tata Motors has also sought government support for electric and driverless technology, and for building a battery factory in the Midlands region of England.
The report comes amid reports of JLR being forced to make job cuts, shedding more than 1,000 agency staff and putting 2,000 workers at its Castle Bromwich plant in the West Midlands on a three-day week.
JLR CEO Ralf Speth has made regular interventions to warn against a “hard Brexit”, or crashing out of the European Union (EU) without a good deal in place, which would adversely hit the car maker’s supply chains and sales.
The Tata Group, which acquired the British luxury car brand from Ford in 2008 for $2.3 billion, has since revived its sagging fortunes and made the company employing 40,000 workers, a profitable concern. The automobile market, however, saw a decline with rules against diesel cars and the entry of electric vehicles.
Jaguar Land Rover has been hit more by the collapse in the Chinese market and contingency planning for Brexit.
The Midlands-based company reported half-year losses of £354 million between March and September, reversing profits of £953 million for the same period a year earlier.