Gamesa Plants Could Create 800 Jobs in Leith
The Spanish company has signed an MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) with the Port of Leith for the establishment of a major offshore manufacturing base in the UK, including blade and nacelles plants for its gargantuan wind turbines, as well as port logistics and O&M services.
On successful completion of the MOU negotiations, the initial investment is expected to be about €150 million over time as Gamesa pursues plans to establish the UK as the centre of its global offshore wind operations.
"If market conditions are favourable this would mean many high quality jobs for the area," said Gamesa Chairman and CEO, Jorge Calvet.
"I have only praise for the support we have received throughout this process from Government Ministers and agencies across the UK. We hope to play a central role in strengthening the UK's offshore wind energy sector and improving security of energy supply in the future. In achieving this we would also minimize any environmental impact whilst continuing to invest in and build relationships with the local communities with which we shall be working. Selection of Leith, as our preferred partner for the MOU aimed at establishing a UK manufacturing base is only a first stage, but an important one."
In 2011, Gamesa established a new R&D facility in Strathclyde, currently employing over 60 engineers, which is steadily growing and is expected to employ 180 people. The Company is in the process of moving its global offshore wind headquarters to its new London offices with an expected head-count of 70 staff.
Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond said the Gamesa announcement was a "welcome boost".
“Gamesa’s decision is also the latest in a series of inward investment announcements by major international companies that signal Scotland’s leading position in the renewables revolution that is sweeping Europe and the wider world," he said.
“It is a validation of the course that this Scottish Government has been steering, assisted by SDI, our enterprise agencies and by a vibrant, dynamic, indigenous energy industry that is strongly committed to expanding its presence in the global low carbon economy.”