I’m simply thrilled to bits that LDV now has a new future in its sights. Its been months of round the clock work!
I always said LDV could make it big in the ‘green van’ market, which is why I’ve fought tooth and nail to get new investors to the table and government help to close the deal.
Our game-plan was simple over the last two months was simple. Buy breathing space to find a new investor – and secure the support to help get a new deal sealed.
Last night, we got final confirmation that the government has delivered for us. First, the tax man held off millions in tax while we got new investors to the table. And today we got government’s promise of £5 million more to help a new deal go through.
Lots of people have made today possible, but I want to say an enormous thank you to the Prime Minister, my fellow minister, Ian Pearson and Tony Woodley of the Unite trade union, all of whom were prepared to listen to our case and back the people of East Birmingham. And a huge well done to LDV’s management team and workers for staying the course and staying determined to make it happen.
Lots of people will ask about jobs and production. After my own talks with management and ministers over the weekend, I met Westar’s management in London late on Bank Holiday Monday. They assured me they plan to keep jobs and production in Washwood Heath. I briefed the Prime Minister on Tuesday morning, and put our pitch for help to ministers throughout the day. Late yesterday evening we got the good news. Government would help make sure this deal goes through. So, this is not the end of the road – but its a massive breakthrough!