North Tyneside's Elected Mayor has welcomed a major investment in offshore wind production in Wallsend.
More than 300 jobs are being created and safeguarded in an offshore wind production boom thanks to more than £70m of government and private investment, Business & Energy Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng announced today (Wednesday, 7 July).
Offshore wind manufacturer Smulders Projects UK will receive support from the Government’s £160 million Offshore Wind Manufacturing Investment Support scheme, and will invest a further £70 million to make offshore wind turbine transition pieces at their site in Wallsend.
Smulders’ new production facility will substantially boost the UK’s offshore wind manufacturing base, supplying essential components to British offshore wind farms across the UK, as well as for export around the world.
This will be a huge boost to the local economy in the North-East, with up to 325 direct jobs and a similar number of indirect jobs being created and safeguarded by 2030, helping to revitalise one of England’s key industrial heartlands and bring in vital investment opportunities.
Elected Mayor of North Tyneside Norma Redfearn CBE said: “I am delighted to hear about this significant investment in the Borough, which will create and protect jobs and have benefits for the wider region.
“Wallsend and the River Tyne has a rich industrial heritage and this latest investment will complement the Council’s own plans, through our Ambition for North Tyneside vision, to continue to breathe new life into the river by working to create more and better jobs for our residents while helping businesses grow.
“We have worked closely with Smulders Projects to support their presence in the Borough and help them establish themselves on the Tyne.”
Business and Energy Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said: “Our offshore wind sector is a UK success story, with more capacity installed than any other country and we are ensuring that our manufacturing base can be equally world-leading.
“Government backing and this investment from Smulders will help put the North-East at the forefront of this manufacturing boom and I’m delighted to see hundreds of high-skilled jobs being created and safeguarded as we revitalise one of our key industrial heartlands.”
It is part of a larger funding package being announced today and more than £180 million Government and private investment will create and safeguard more than 1,000 jobs in the North-East and Humber, building factories that will develop components for next generation wind turbines.
Raf Iemants, CEO of Smulders, said: “Smulders is extremely proud to further strengthen the ties with the United Kingdom with respect to Offshore Wind.
“This significant investment shows the dedication, commitment and determination by Smulders and the UK to strive together for further increases in inward and local content in this very challenging market.
“We look forward to increasing our long track record in UK waters with the help of our local workforce and established supply chain in the North-East.”