A company based in Melbourne working on plans to produce its own brand of petrol engine, electric, and hybrid cars in Australia, has condemned the move of the federal government to restore industry assistance, stating that it will only be responsible for a flawed system that provides handouts to the big 3, foreign-owned car producers.
The managing director of Ethan Automotive, Mr. Ashley Fenn stated that while the firm was pleased that the government had decided to put down the extra money in the market, the existing Automotive Transformation Scheme was incorrectly targeted.
He said that they should stop providing the money to the foreign-owned producers and invest it into manufacturing an Australian automotive industry so they have something. They are back to where they had started. The ATS is still a defective plan because the way it is prepared, the local component providers cannot argue on it in the future.
Mr. Ashley Fenn stated that the move by the Ford, GM Holden, and Toyota to wrap up their production operations in Australia by 2017 means that there were no considerable automotive projects that automotive providers could talk about against under the ATS.
He stated that preparatory design, tooling, engineering, and research & development work, which would usually start at least 5 years in advance of the release of a new model of a vehicle, were not being undertaken. According to Mr. Fenn, they want the government to invest into the auto sector in Australia.
Ethan Automotive is now looking for the access to the ATS plan after declaring plans to open a head office at Port Adelaide in the previous month as a part of a grand strategy to make cars in South Australia after the closure of the Holden.