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Greg Clark, the business, energy and industrial strategy secretary, has said making Britain a world-leading hub for next-generation electric vehicles will be at the heart of the government's new industrial strategy, providing one of the clearest indications yet of the sectors it wants to focus on in a post-Brexit economy.

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Clark said the automotive sector, particularly electric vehicles, driverless cars and battery storage, will be a "emblematic area of focus" and is going to be "one of the big features of the world and Britain's industrial policy during the weeks, months and years ahead".

JLR intends to build test centres and research facilities on a 60-acre site close to its Coventry headquarters as well as more ambitious long-term plans for a much bigger site in the area. This would allow for a full battery manufacturing plant, as well as potentially additional car lines, which could be used to make electric vehicles.

Martin Yardley, chief executive of the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership, told the gathering that the first stage of the expansion would create up to 10,000 jobs, with potentially up to 100,000 more in the supply chain. The company confirmed it intended to create 10,000 jobs as part of its expansion.

Mr Speth said JLR, which will manufacture its first electric car (The Jaguar I-Pace) in Austria using a third-party group called Magna, wanted to make other electric models in Britain. "We want to build our EVs [electric vehicles] in the West Midlands, in the home of our design and engineering," he said. "This is why we must bring battery R&D and production to the UK."


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