‘We seem hell bent on damaging our reputation’ – car industry body attacks diesel policy and hard Brexit


The Society for Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), the trade body that represents the UK car industry, has called for faster progress in agreeing a Brexit transition period, and criticised the government for “demonising” diesel.

Speaking to over a thousand industry leaders at the organisation’s annual dinner in London, SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes outlined some of the “huge challenges” facing the British carmaking industry.

“Our contribution to the UK economy – to the fabric of this country – is great,” he said.

“We are job creators and export leaders; we are innovators in advanced manufacturing and connectivity; and we provide the mobility products and services on which the economy depends. Given our importance and potential we need government – all of government – aligned to create the right conditions.

“A good Brexit deal will be fundamental to those competitive conditions. But there is more that can be done here and now.

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