Autonomous vehicles will lead to job losses, claim Labour Party

The London Evening Standard is reporting that Shadow transport secretary Louise Haigh has warned that ‘mistakes of deindustrialisation’ cannot be made with the introduction of self-driving cars.

Job losses as a result of self-driving cars cannot be allowed to replicate the “ravages of deindustrialisation”, Labour have warned.

During the second reading of the Automated Vehicles Bill, Transport Secretary Mark Harper told the Commons it is part of the Government’s plans to make the UK “the natural home for the self-driving vehicle industry”.

The Bill aims to set the legal framework for the safe deployment of self-driving vehicles.

Shadow transport secretary Louise Haigh said the mistakes of deindustrialisation cannot be made with the introduction of self-driving cars, despite the incredible technology-driven societal advances over the last few decades. “There is one major area that this Bill does not address and that we’ve not considered in any meaningful capacity, and that is the potential impact on jobs from automated vehicles. As a South Yorkshire MP I am all too familiar with the economic impacts of deindustrialisation. Far too many towns and cities across the north have already suffered enough from lost livelihoods, from the social fabric of their communities being ripped apart, as a new economic model left them behind.”

Chairman of the Government’s transport committee, Conservative MP Iain Stewart, said that driverless cars would generate new jobs in the UK.

“We’ve heard very legitimate concerns about jobs from this new technology, but the upside to jobs is, again using Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders’ figures, 12,000 new direct jobs in automotive manufacturing and over 300,000 additional jobs in the wider economy. So there are economic opportunities, job opportunities, from this new technology.”

(Picture – Oxbotica)


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