Vauxhall at Ellesmere Port and Battery Manufacturing Strategy

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:38 pm on 1st March 2021.

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Photo of Stephen Flynn Stephen Flynn Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) 3:38 pm, 1st March 2021

I commend Greg Clark for securing this urgent question. The reality is that this matter depends on two key issues facing the UK right now: the disaster that is the Tory Brexit deal, but also, as has been said, how this Government intend to save and create jobs in the UK while driving through the changes necessary to reduce vehicle emissions.

On Brexit, the mess is clear for all to see. Indeed, the owner of Ellesmere Port said last month that it might make more sense to invest in Europe because

“the biggest market is on the continental Europe side”.

The Tories need to own their mess, as indeed does the Labour party, which has happily pushed a deal over the line. Does the Secretary of State now, even grudgingly, accept that the deal is not fit for purpose?

On vehicle emissions, the shift towards electric and, perhaps even more so, hydrogen is vital to deliver the reductions necessary, but we need to ensure that we create a supply chain at home that supports vehicle manufacturers to make an affordable transition. The Secretary of State will likely accept this point, but does he not agree that his Government need to go further and faster in their financial support?