08 December 2009 18:12 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS news)--North east England’s chemical industry is set to benefit from a £60m ($97.7m, €66.3m) government investment to stimulate manufacturing in Teesside, the North East Process Industry Cluster (NEPIC) said on Tuesday.
Up to £20m would be invested in the nearby Wilton International site which has suffered by closures and job cuts in recent months, NEPIC said.
NEPIC also announced on Tuesday that the government’s investment included a substantial package in support of the process sector’s 10 point action plan on how to tackle the immediate and long-term challenges facing Teesside’s chemicals industry, which UK Business Secretary Lord Mandelson was handed in November.
"Today's announcement clearly shows that our sector is benefiting from the sad news from Corus. We have however been working on our projects for many years. Over recent months have refined these projects with public sector and industry colleagues,” said Stan Higgins, CEO of NEPIC.
“We were ready and can now move quickly to secure the future of the Process Industry on Teesside and we will be redoubling our efforts to develop new industry and new jobs," he added.
Bob Coxon, who headed the Ten Point Plan on behalf of NEPIC, welcomed the announcement stating that the government investment was a clear demonstration of a commitment to the future of the process industry and a firm backing to the plan.
Mandelson said in a separate statement that £10m would be provided for apprenticeships and support for people starting new businesses as a direct result of steel giant Corus announcing plans it would mothball part of its giant plant at ?xml:namespace>
"Teesside has the skills, the workforce and the infrastructure to compete in future advanced and low carbon manufacturing. We’re acting to ensure they have the best support to succeed," said Mandelson.
The Government has aimed to create 3,000 new jobs and decided to prioritise a number of projects to secure immediate investment to support workers in the area.
($1 = €0.67, €1 = £0.90)
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