Europe-wide call for support

European car makers are calling for more "urgent and decisive support" to help the car industry survive the recession.

The multiple appeals came after the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA) said it expects car sales to fall by 15% over the next year.

The ACEA said if the situation is to be prevented from getting worse governments must introduce incentives to encourage consumers back to the market and scrap old cars in favour of new models.

It said more loans should be given to manufacturers to help them invest in more eco-friendly cars in a bid to meet EU climate change targets and to hold on to skilled workers.

Renault chief executive Carlos Ghosn said car makers have asked the European Investment Bank for £5.5 billion in loans to match industry investment in low-emission vehicles, but instead it will only get £3 billion in March.

The UK Government is the latest to offer help to its struggling car industry with a cash injection of £2.3 billion.

Germany's stimulus package plans include giving £2,300 towards the purchase of a new car to anyone who agrees to exchange their existing one if it is more than 9-years-old.

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