Page last updated at 15:25 GMT, Wednesday, 6 May 2009 16:25 UK

Rover probe has cost 15m so far

Longbridge factory, Birmingham
MG Rover collapsed in April 2005

The government's inquiry into the demise of the Birmingham-based carmaker MG Rover in 2005 has already cost more than £15m, the government has said.

The investigation is looking into what happened between the acquisition by Phoenix Ventures in 2000 and the firm falling into administration in 2005.

In a written parliamentary answer, the Business Minister Pat McFadden said the cost by 31 March had been £15,191,376.

The inspectors have not been given a target date to complete their work.

The answer was in response to a question from Peter Luff MP, Conservative chairman of the Business and Enterprise Select Committee.

Money focus

About 6,000 jobs were lost at Rover's Longbridge plant and the company was sold to China's Nanjing Automobile.

Part of the investigation was supposed to find out what had happened to the £450m left to Phoenix Ventures when it took over MG Rover from BMW in 2000.

The Public Accounts Committee criticised the government in 2006 for being too distant from Phoenix Ventures and not sufficiently prepared for its demise.

When Rover collapsed, the government announced a £150m support package for those losing their jobs and for the estimated 12,500 people in affected subsidiary firms.

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