UK and Chinese car manufacturers association sign co-op agreement
The UK auto industry trade association SMMT and its Chinese equivalent, the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM), have signed a co-operation agreement designed to help develop mutual understanding and co-operation between both automotive industries to create new business opportunities.
The two associations said the opportunities for growth are clear, built on mutual trust and a desire to develop the trading relationship between China and the UK that goes back decades.
British investment into the Chinese automotive sector started in the eighties, with GKN the first western company to invest in the country's component industry in 1988. Followed by the major British car manufacturers that have established dealer networks across and producing cars unit throughout China.
Meanwhile, Chinese investment in the UK automotive industry has ramped up considerably in recent years. Milestones include SAIC establishing its Technical Centre in the country in 2005 to support product development at the MG brand, and Changan Automobile setting up its UK research and development centre in 2010, dedicated to powertrain development.
More recently Geely announced a significant investment in British sports car manufacturer Lotus in 2017, and BYD will this summer roll out fully electric double deck buses on the streets of London in partnership with British manufacturer Alexander Dennis.