Rudd pledges $500 million more for car industry

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has pledged to give the automotive manufacturing industry an extra $500 million from 2016 to 2020.

The SMH reports that, on top of that, hundreds of millions more in assistance will be provided over the subsequent decade.

The funding is intended to secure the medium-term future of Holden's operation and the Australian arm of Toyota. It is hope that it will protect the jobs of 50,000 auto-sector workers.

Opposition Leader Tony Abbott told reporters in Perth on Saturday that the Coalition was prepared to support the motor industry with conditions.

''We want the industry to have a future, not just a past, and we are prepared to make a substantial commitment to it but it must be a sound rationally based commitment with a realistic prospect of success,'' he said.

''There is the existing significant support which the Coalition entirely accepts with this one provision: that we think the automotive transformation scheme should have $1 billion in it as it was originally budgeted rather than the $1.5 billion the government put in there at the height of the GFC.''

AAP reports that Opposition industry spokeswoman Sophie Mirabella said that the coalition’s approach is to make it cheaper the build cars in Australia by cutting the carbon tax, reducing company tax and slashing business red tape.

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