World Bulletin / News Desk
Toyota announced a £240 million ($293 million) investment in a car assembly plant in central England on Thursday, despite uncertainty over Britain's looming exit from the European Union.
Japan's major automakers have expressed concerns about the impact of Brexit on their access to the European market.
Toyota has said would fight to continue operating two plants in Britain, including a motor making factory in Wales, which employ more than 3,400 people.
The UK government's share of the investment would be used for "training, research and development, and further enhancements of the plant's environmental performance", Toyota said.
"We are doing all we can to raise the competitiveness of our Burnaston plant in Derbyshire," it said in a statement.
"Continued tariff-and-barrier free market access between the UK and Europe that is predictable and uncomplicated will be vital for future success."
After receiving private guarantees from the British government, Carlos Ghosn, the head of rival automaker Nissan, in October gave the green light to new investments at its plant in Sunderland, northeast England.
Volatility eased as traders focused on the world economy and corporate earnings after a week dominated by the dramatic spike in tensions over North Korea, which triggered a global sell-off before prices bounced back Monday.
Investors greeted the more conciliatory tone after US stocks dropped three days in a row last week on President Donald Trump's vow of "fire and fury" if North Korea continued to pursue its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs.
The ultra-conservative kingdom has moved to diversify its traditionally oil-dependent economy following a sharp fall in crude prices.
In its monthly report on the global oil market, the International Energy Agency said, however, that it believes the supply glut is easing, partly because demand is growing faster.
US stocks have been in retreat since President Donald Trump Tuesday issued a fiery warning to North Korea to halt its nuclear program.
The move by one of Japan's best-known firms greatly reduces the chance of an embarrassing delisting from the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE).
London's benchmark FTSE 100 index weakened by 0.5 percent to 7,503.39 points.
The approval by the European Commission comes just over two months after the European Central Bank -- which took on the role of the eurozone's banking supervisor in 2014 -- allowed the sale to go ahead for a symbolic fee of one euro.
BP, Chevron, ExxonMobil, Shell and Total have all published results in recent days, showing they pocketed $23 billion in net profit in the first half fo the year.
Higher cereal, sugar and dairy prices pushed food price index by 10.2 percent annually in July
HSBC was also a big riser, gaining three percent at £7.65 ($10, 8.5 euros) in late morning trade after the British banking giant announced a share buyback plan alongside a rise in first-half profits.
Both main crude contracts made strong gains, with WTI testing $50 a barrel for the first time since late May and Brent heading towards $53, while mining giants BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto saw their share price rise as commodities strengthened.