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Potential jobs boost in the West Midlands from Gigafactory plans

Coventry Airport has been identified as the preferred West Midlands site for a potential new UK Gigafactory, and a public consultation is now underway. The proposed site would support the UK car industry as a large scale electric vehicle battery production facility.

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The consultation has been launched to understand the views of residents and the local community before the submission of the final planning application.

The building of a Gigafactory is a fundamental part of the national infrastructure needed to manufacture electric car batteries at scale. The development of a Gigafactory will help protect and create automotive jobs in the West Midlands region.

The proposed Gigafactory would generate approximately 4,500 jobs directly, as well as tens of thousands of additional jobs linked to the supply chain and secure an additional £2bn investment for the region.

Cllr Jim O’Boyle cabinet member jobs and regeneration at Coventry City Council, said:

“The launch of the public consultation marks a significant step forward as we prepare a planning application for a Gigafactory at Coventry Airport. Coventry, at the heart of the UK automotive sector has access to talent, world-leading research centres, and a mature supply chain, all of which are critical to delivering a Gigafactory.”

Andrew Bell, chief executive officier of Regional City Airports who own and manage Coventry Airport, added:

“Coventry Airport is the ideal site for a West Midlands Gigafactory, and we are excited to support the local partnership as it brings forward proposals. Over the coming weeks and months, we will be working with the local community and others to ensure that the proposals deliver the maximum possible benefit to the area and region, and we encourage local people to take part in the consultation.”

Coventry and Warwickshire have emerged as a centre of excellence in battery technology, with the UK Battery Industrialisation Centre – an important research institute being based close to the proposed Gigafactory site as well as the Warwick Manufacturing Group based at Warwick University.

A Gigafactory is a critical piece of national infrastructure and fundamental to the delivery of large-scale electric vehicle battery production. Coventry Airport sits at the heart of an automotive cluster, with space required for a Gigafactory and a well connected to the transport network.

The public consultation is being managed online due to ongoing COVID restrictions

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