Nissan plans Sunderland gigafactory; seeks millions

Nissan is in advanced talks with an attempt to secure tens of millions of pounds of support from the UK government to build a massive battery gigafactory at its existing Sunderland site, according to multiple news reports.

The gigafactory would be run by Nissan’s Chinese battery supplier Envision AESC and would support the production of 200,000 battery cars a year as well as thousands of jobs.

Nissan wants significant financial support from the UK government for the project, including a “route” to lower its energy costs for producing the batteries.

“Having established EV [electric vehicle] and battery production in the UK in 2013 for the Nissan Leaf, our Sunderland plant has played a pioneering role in developing the electric vehicle market,” said Nissan in a statement.

“As previously announced, we will continue to electrify our lineup as part of our global journey towards carbon neutrality.

“However, we have no further plans to announce at this time.”

A spokesman for the UK’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy said: “We are dedicated to securing gigafactories and continue to work closely with investors and vehicle manufacturers to progress plans to mass produce batteries in the UK.”

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Mark McSherry
Dalriada Media LLC sites are edited by veteran news journalist Mark McSherry, a former staff editor and reporter with Reuters, Bloomberg and major newspapers including the South China Morning Post, London's Sunday Times and The Scotsman. McSherry's journalism has also appeared in The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Independent, The New York Times, London's Evening Standard and Forbes. McSherry is also a professor of journalism and communication arts in universities and colleges in New York City. Scottish-born McSherry has an MBA from the University of Edinburgh and a Certificate in Global Affairs from New York University.