RenewableUK hails record GBP-900m offshore wind manufacturing investment

Teesside port look after redevelopment. Image credit: Teesworks. Source: www.ge.com

September 30 (Renewables Now) - Since the start of the year, more than GBP 900 million (USD 1.2bn/EUR 1bn) of factory investment has been announced in the UK offshore wind manufacturing sector, a record annual figure, industry group RenewableUK calculates.

A GBP-130-million investment announced this week will see cable maker JDR Cable Systems Ltd build a new factory in Cambois near Blyth, creating 170 jobs, and protect 270 jobs at its existing plant in Hartlepool.

In March, General Electric Co (NYSE:GE) unveiled plans to turn a former steelworks site on Teesside into a turbine blade manufacturing facility, which will create 750 direct jobs.

In July, it was announced that South Korean company SeAH Wind Ltd will invest in monopile foundation factory at the Able Marine Energy Park on the Humber, while Smulders Projects UK will invest in the production of large offshore wind turbine transition pieces at its site at Wallsend.

In August, Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy SA (BME:SGRE) announced a GBP-186-million investment in doubling its offshore wind turbine blade factory in Hull. It was also announced that GRI Renewable Industries will build a GBP-78-million offshore wind turbine tower factory on the Humber.

The UK government is facilitating these investments through the Offshore Wind Manufacturing Investment Support scheme.

“The Government is playing an important role in securing supply chain investment by providing strategic funding support to deliver the green economic recovery this country needs,” said RenewableUK chief executive Dan McGrail.

The sector already employs 26,000 people and this number is expected to increase to 69,000 over the next five years, McGrail also said.

RenewableUK provided the analysis on Wednesday as part of its Global Offshore Wind conference and exhibition in London.

(GBP 1 = USD 1.348/EUR 1.157)

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Browse all articles from Plamena Tisheva

Plamena has been a UK-focused reporter for many years. As part of the Renewables Now team she is taking a keen interest in policy moves.

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