Unite has welcomed the decision by BMW to build the next generation electric Mini at Cowley, Oxfordshire, but urged the UK government to get behind the workforce by urgently investing in the developing electric car industry.
BMW had warned it was considering making the electric Mini on the continent because of Brexit uncertainty was “not helpful when it comes to making long-term business decisions”.
Commenting, Unite general secretary Len McCluskey said: “This announcement is a huge and totally deserved boost to a world class workforce that has endured a tough few months.
“Around the world and for generations the Mini means made in Britain. With the electric Mini being built in Cowley the tradition continues but with the added bonus that this is one of the important innovations of tomorrow.
“It is fantastic news and is in no small part down to the tremendous skills and efficiency of BMW’s UK workers and our members.
“Throughout the years Mini workers have shown themselves to be leaders in innovation. It is only right that this tradition continues with the next generation electric Mini being built here in the UK.”
Len McCluskey added that the government must also move into delivery mode for our manufacturing sector: “Now we need to back manufacturing workers by putting the UK in the fast lane of electric motoring, committing to investing in the charging infrastructure needed to power the electric Minis of tomorrow.
“The government must play its part with a set of serious proposals to invest in our manufacturing future, the bedrock of wealth creation in this country.
“We urge the government to waste no more time – in bringing forward an industrial strategy of the scale and scope to ensure UK manufacturing stays in the fast lane. ”