Tata Motors' JLR seeks Covid-19 support package from UK govt: Report

Britain's largest carmaker has submitted a large bespoke loan package request to ministers in recent weeks, 'Sky News' reported
Tata Motors owned Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is in talks with the UK government for an estimated one-billion pounds support package to tide through the coronavirus pandemic, according to British media reports.

Britain's largest carmaker has submitted a large bespoke loan package request to ministers in recent weeks, 'Sky News' reported.

The request is understood to be for temporary state funding, with the loan request lodged with the UK's Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), which is headed by Indian-origin minister Alok Sharma.

Jaguar Land Rover [is] constantly in discussion with government on a whole range of matters relating to Covid-19 and we will not discuss details which are confidential and private, a JLR spokesperson said.

The Sunday Times' reported last week that the government was exploring plans to become a lender of last resort to key companies, including JLR, which could entail the state extending loans that could convert into shares.

The UK's Treasury department plans to set up a bad bank or asset resolution fund to hold stakes in companies that it may end up part-owning.

The West Midlands luxury car giant employs around 40,000 people, with the vast majority in the UK, and supports a large number of suppliers.

Its sales fell 31 per cent in the first three months of the year amid the lockdown and it was forced to halt production in the UK, putting staff on furlough, until restarting work amid social distance rules at its Solihull factory last week.

There are also concerns around the Tata Group's other major asset - the Port Talbot steelworks, owned by Tata Steel, with the company thought to be considering shutting one of its two blast furnaces.

The Indian steel major has sought a 500-million pounds loan from the government to support the south Wales site, which employs about 4,000. That request is also believed to be under consideration by the government.


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