Business

The government believes it has secured a commitment from Jaguar Land Rover owner Tata to build a new gigafactory in the UK, Sky News has been told.

Senior Whitehall sources believe the Indian industrial giant has chosen the UK over Spain as the site for its giant new battery factory.

The news is due to be confirmed at a meeting between Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and the Tata chairman Natarajan Chandrasekaran next week.

The deal will involve around half a billion pounds worth of public support, in part to secure low energy prices for the plant – one of the biggest industrial interventions in recent history.

Both the Spanish and British governments have been involved in a bidding war offering subsidies to the firm in recent weeks, according to reports.

The factory is likely to be built in Somerset and could create up to 9,000 jobs, it is reported.

It comes amid competition between nations around the world to build enough new battery factories to supply their car industries.

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Last week, the head of collapsed cell manufacturer Britishvolt told Sky News he believed the UK had missed its window of opportunity to build a battery industry.

Co-founder Orral Nadjari blamed government bureaucracy for the failure of the firm, which had planned to build a gigafactory, co-financed by the government before it went into administration earlier this year.

The government hit back at Mr Nadjari’s claims, describing them as “completely untrue”.

It came as Vauxhall’s parent company Stellantis called on the government to renegotiate its Brexit deal with the EU, telling a parliamentary committee’s inquiry on electric vehicle production it was no longer able to meet trade rules on where parts are sourced.

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