The North East’s advanced manufacturing and green industries sectors are set for a jobs boost as a multi-million pound investment progresses.
An Investment Zone for the North East will benefit from £160m of government money over the next 10 years, unlocking hundreds of millions of pounds of investment from the private sector and creating up to 4,000 new jobs.
The investment was first announced as part of the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement in November, with a focus on clean energy and green manufacturing – reflecting the region’s long-standing strengths and increasing prominence as an international hub for clean energy.
The zone will take a broad regional focus, supporting growth and ensuring that communities and businesses across our region will have access to the new employment and supply chain benefits across key sites:
Blyth Energy Central
Along the River Tyne Corridor
International Advanced Manufacturing Strategic Site (IAMSS) in Sunderland and South Tyneside
NETPark (North East Technology Park) in County Durham
Sites will benefit from a mix of tax incentives and upfront infrastructure investment, with region-wide investment in industry-led skills, innovation and research also supported through IZ proposals.
The zone is aligned to the £4.2bn devolution deal with local council leaders overseeing the development of the plans. The new combined authority will lead the development of the zone, with the North of Tyne Combined Authority (NTCA) the accountable body until May this year, when the new combined authority is formally established.
Cllr Graeme Miller, Interim portfolio holder for finance and investment for the new combined authority, and also Leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “This region wide investment is a great example of the seven councils coming together and making decisions to benefit the North East, with the benefit of strong relationships with business and an understanding of our communities.
“As a group of council leaders we are leading the establishment of the new combined authority and this investment zone would not have been possible without this joint effort. The investment, and private sector investment it will leverage, will have a real impact for our residents, now and for many generations to come.
“We are already recognised as world leading in clean energy and green manufacturing and this just further cements our position as the best place to do business in these sectors.”
The proposals are expected to be given final Government approval in March with implementation from the Spring.