Jaguar Land Rover bucks trend to create new jobs

By Laura Payne 25/07 Updated: 25/07 15:25

JAGUAR Land Rover continues to defy the recession with the announcement of a 1,100 jobs boost at its Castle Bromwich plant.

The firm said the workers - who are already being recruited - will help support its future development which includes building the new Jaguar XF Sportbrake - a billed rival to the German luxury estate market.

JLR also said its strengthening workforce will allow the company to realise its ambition ‘to deliver 40 significant product actions over the next five years.’

Just last week employees at the plant agreed to new working conditions which unions said would safeguard jobs.

And now this week’s announcement has given workers a massive vote of confidence for the future.

Jerry Blackett, chief executive of Solihull and Birmingham Chamber of Commerce Group, welcomed the ‘overwhelmingly positive news’ as a ‘big opportunity for the region.'

He added: “It confirms our locality as the fastest-growing part of the UK’s automotive industry, makes clear where career opportunities lie and should encourage the best of our young people to choose study routes that will prepare them for these jobs.

“It also presents the hundreds of businesses that supply JLR with increased opportunities.

“Again, we need to ensure our local manufacturers continue to create components that make the West Midlands the first choice for JLR, given the company’s ability to source its needs from the best in the world.”

Over the last two years JLR has hired 8,000 people and the company believes the creation of an extra 1,100 jobs will have a positive knock-on effect for its UK suppliers.

Ralf Speth, JLR CEO, said: “Innovation in design, engineering and technology is at the core of our business and for the UK this means we will continue to invest in new products, develop new technologies and enhance the skills of our employees.”

The jobs boost was backed by the government with business secretary Vince Cable describing it as fantastic news.

“This expansion is a clear demonstration of Jaguar Land Rover’s continuing commitment and investment in the UK,” he said.

The announcement continues a period of growth for the company as global sales totalling more than 29,000 were recorded in the first six months of the year, a 19 per cent increase on the same period last year.

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