NISSAN’S jobs injection was today welcomed by civic and business leaders across Wearside and the UK.
Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “It’s fantastic news that Nissan will be building the new Invitation model in Sunderland.
“The investment is a boost for jobs at Nissan’s plant as well as the wider supply chain.
“This latest announcement highlights the UK’s track record of attracting inward investment. Global vehicle manufacturers are beating a path to the UK’s door. They recognise that the Government values the automotive sector.
“Nissan was able to push on with developing this latest project thanks to the Regional Growth Fund offer.”
Sunderland City Council leader Coun Paul Watson said: “We’ve just marked Nissan’s 25th year of production in 2011 and here we are with another major announcement from this international manufacturing plant.
“With the Invitation model, hundreds of new jobs and hundreds of millions of pounds invested in its production facilities, here’s further proof and confidence how Sunderland is not just a British automotive centre but at the heart of European and world manufacturing.
“The announcement shows once again how Made in Sunderland has always been a proud badge and how Sunderland is always open for business and open to business.”
North East Chamber of Commerce director of membership and policy Andrew Sugden added: “I would like to congratulate Nissan Motors UK and its dedicated workforce.
“Nissan is one of the North East’s blue chip companies. For quarter of a century it has established a reputation for excellence and continuous improvement, regularly smashing its own production records.
“The unparalleled level of performance from the Wearside workforce can only have served to convince Nissan’s senior management that Sunderland is the perfect place to oversee production of this new vehicle.
“The importance of Nissan to the regional economy cannot be underestimated. For every person employed by the company another four are supported in Nissan’s supply chain and with employment at the plant reaching a record high this is another welcome achievement.
“With the Sunderland plant set to launch Nissan’s first lithium-ion battery production facility outside Japan and preparations well under way for the start of Nissan Leaf production in 2013, the year ahead looks incredibly exciting for the company.”
Gary Hutchinson, Sunderland branch chairman of the North East Chamber of Commerce, said: “This is superb news for Nissan and the city of Sunderland.
“This further cements the long-term future of the plant and brings much- needed jobs in the manufacturing sector, we are making great strides as a leading city in the UK in this sector. We as a city need to build further on this great sign of confidence to attract further inward investment.
“Congratulations to Trevor Mann and his team in another great achievement. The NECC will support Nissan as required through the development in future months and years.”
Plant chief Trevor Mann said: “The additional volume will maintain Sunderland as the country’s largest car plant and we expect and look forward to a very busy future.”