The Prime Minister is in Japan today as part of the government’s efforts to boost prosperity at home by strengthening relations with key trading partners overseas.
With the world’s 3rd largest economy and Japanese investment in the UK valued at more than £26 billion, David Cameron will meet potential investors to make clear that Britain is open for business.
The strength of Japanese investment will be highlighted through a number of new investment deals worth more than £200 million, creating almost 1500 new jobs in the UK and safeguarding thousands more.
The Prime Minister started his day with a visit to Nissan’s headquarters in Yokohama, where the leading car manufacturer announced that they will produce their all-new hatchback at their Sunderland plant from 2014.
It is expected that this will create 225 new jobs at the plant and a further 900 in the supply chain across the UK.
This follows the announcement in March that Sunderland will also build the a new compact car in Sunderland from 2013, meaning more than 3,000 new jobs for the UK automotive sector in the next 2 years.
Welcoming the announcement, David Cameron said:
It is fantastic news that Nissan will be building their new hatchback model in the UK and that they expect to create more than 1000 jobs at the Sunderland plant and in the supply chain across the country. It’s proof of the strength and vitality of the British manufacturing industry that leading companies like Nissan are expanding their production in the UK.
I’ve already seen first hand the tremendous work at the Nissan Sunderland plant and it’s great to be visiting the company’s headquarters in Yokohama today. Nissan’s investment in the UK is a huge vote of confidence in the skills and flexibility of the UK workforce. We want to attract more investment like this and that’s why we’re encouraging foreign companies with incentives like the Regional Growth Fund.
The Prime Minister will be accompanied on his visit to Japan by representatives from more than 35 companies, covering a range of sectors including defence, construction, manufacturing, energy, financial and legal services, retail, higher education, technology and sport.
Speaking to Japanese daily Yomiuri, the world’s largest newspaper ahead of his visit, the Prime Minister said:
We do have very good relations between Britain and Japan. We’re old friends, we’re old allies, we’re partners in many senses. But I think we can take the relationship even further, so I think it’s a great honour to be able to come to Japan and have meetings with your Prime Minister.
There’s an important diplomatic, political sense to this. But also I think that we’re both in need of economic growth and economic development, and I think the chance of expanding our trade and investment ties is very strong. So, for all those reasons, I think there is much more we can do.