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Nissan plans more UK investment as it focuses on green tech

Nissan will lift recent investments in its British plant to over 1 billion pounds ($1.4 billion) in the next few years as it focuses on greener technology, the automaker said as it showcased its latest Qashqai car on Thursday.

The Japanese automaker decided in 2016 to build the vehicle in Britain in what was seen as a key vote of confidence just months after the Brexit referendum raised uncertainty over its trading relationship with the European Union.

On Christmas Eve last year London and Brussels struck an agreement that permits tariff-free trade as long as local content thresholds are met.

The automaker said in January it would source more batteries in Britain as a result, and on Thursday its Europe boss Gianlucca de Fichy informed reporters it planned further investment.

“We’ve invested over 400 million pounds so far in our English factory, and we are planning over the coming years to exceed the 1 billion investment mark, including because of the introduction of e-Power which will come to market soon,” he said.

Asked about cross-manufacturing with alliance partner Renault, de Ficchy said Nissan was working together with the French automaker.

“We continue to cooperate with Renault and study the opportunities that might arise, in terms of car models and technology,” he said. “We’re exploring all avenues.”

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