United Kingdom

United Kingdom

Siemens picks UK for £50million offshore factory

UK: Siemens is set to become the latest wind turbine manufacturer to invest in a multi-million pound UK factory.

The world’s largest offshore wind park, Horns Rev II using 2.3MW Siemens turbines
The world’s largest offshore wind park, Horns Rev II using 2.3MW Siemens turbines

Thanks to the UK's investment in its offshore ambitions, manufacturers such as Clipper Windpower, Mitsubishi and GE have all announced plans to build factories in the country.

It is believed the factory, which will cost in the region of £50m, will be formerly launched by Siemens and the UK government on Wednesday.

Siemens' plans follow last week's announcement by chancellor Alastair Darling of a £60million grant to build port facilities to aid offshore development. Additionally a ‘green' bank with a £2billion investment fund has also been created.

Speaking about the project Peter Löscher, President and CEO of Siemens AG said: "In the foreseeable future the wind power market in the UK will be characterized by major offshore projects, and we'll extend our market leadership with the new production plant."

Siemens UK CEO Andreas J. Goss added: "The British government has established attractive terms and conditions for investors in renewables. This applies in particular to offshore wind power.

"The planned production plant in the UK will create more than 700 new jobs. There will also be more new jobs in the area of logistics and at suppliers. We're intending to make investments in the high double-digit million range."

Siemens said it is currently appraising the suitability of potential sites for the production plant, both on the east coast and in the northeast of the UK, with a special focus on the harbor infrastructure.

All of the factories will have some sort of backing by the UK government, which has ambitions to become the number one player in offshore wind energy.

Other UK offshore plans in development:

  • GE plans to manufacture its offshore specific 4MW wind turbine in the UK. The company said the project could result in up to 2000 jobs by 2020. The factory will cost around €110m, which will also be home to its application and service engineering resources for the turbine.
  • Mitsubishi is to invest £100million building an offshore wind turbine research facility in north-east England. The UK government is providing grants worth £30 million for the project, which is expected to create 200 jobs by 2014. The proposed plant will be for research purposes only, but the government said the project marked the first step towards production of turbines for the next generation of offshore wind farms, which could generate a possible 1500 new jobs.
  • Clipper Windpower is building a factory in England's north-east to develop and build blades for the ‘Britannia Project', a 10 MW offshore wind turbine prototype. The prototype is scheduled for deployment in late 2012, and is among the largest wind turbines under development in the wind industry.
  • Iberdrola Renovables has announced plans to create a global offshore arm and locate its head office in Glasgow, Scotland.The ‘Offshore Wind Division' will be incorporated into the company's UK business, Scottish Power Renewables. The offshoot will spearhead plans to build a 7.2GW offshore East Anglia Array project in the North Sea. Iberdrola was awarded the rights to the project, along with Vattenfall, as part of the Round 3 offshore consultation.



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