Gamesa, a global technology leader in the wind energy industry, announces its intention to pursue an MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) with the Port of Leith, which would be aimed at agreeing detailed arrangements for the establishment of a major offshore manufacturing base in the UK (including blade and nacelles plants, port logistics and O&M services). Subject to MOU agreement, this would form an important part of Gamesa’s long term strategic relationship with the UK and a commitment to establishing the UK as the centre of Gamesa’s global offshore wind operations.
Depending on market developments, this new Gamesa manufacturing base in the UK would eventually create about 800 new jobs. Over time and subject to commercial opportunities, this would represent an initial investment of about €150million.
Gamesa’s decision to pursue MOU discussions with the Port of Leith follows a detailed process to identify a partner port which would meet the Company’s manufacturing and operational requirements whilst providing the optimum commercial solution for the Company. Gamesa would like to thank all the ports considered as possible Gamesa locations during this process for their help and cooperation. Gamesa is also grateful to a wide range of Ministers and governmental authorities at all levels across the UK for advice and support throughout this process.
Successful completion of MOU negotiations would mark a further stage in Gamesa’s engagement in the UK. 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.
Gamesa Chairman and CEO, Jorge Calvet said:
"I am delighted that Gamesa will pursue MOU discussions with the Port of Leith aimed at manufacturing its technologically advanced wind turbines for the offshore sector there. If market conditions are favourable this would mean many high quality jobs for the area. 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."
UK, an attractive place for foreign investment
Prime Minister David Cameron said:
"This is fantastic news for Scotland and shows that the UK remains an attractive place for foreign investment."
First Minister Alex Salmond said:
"I’m delighted that Gamesa has chosen Scotland and the fantastic Port of Leith as its preferred location for the manufacture of its new model of offshore wind turbines. This is terrific news, meaning up to 1000 jobs and 150 million euro of investment in Scotland. Their decision, coming less than a year after opening their offshore wind technology centre near Glasgow, follows many detailed discussions with the Scottish Government, SDI and Scottish Enterprise and the company’s own careful analysis of locations offering the optimum environment to deliver its product.
"I look forward to the parties moving forward quickly to conclude the MoU, as today’s announcement is a welcome boost to Leith and to the wider Edinburgh and Lothians economy – with hundreds of quality engineering and other jobs coming to Scotland’s capital city."
Energy Secretary Ed Davey added:
"I am delighted that Gamesa has chosen to invest in Leith and cement its commitment to the UK offshore wind market. The Government has been working with the company on this project for some time so it is great to see real progress being made. This was clearly a closely run race between two excellent locations – a powerful message to the offshore wind industry that the UK is the place to be. Projects like this have the potential to bring investment and support jobs across the whole of the country. Being a United Kingdom means we can attract the large investment necessary and keep costs down."
18 years’ experience and over 24,000 MW installed in 35 countries, strengthen Gamesa as a global technology leader in the wind turbine business. Its comprehensive response includes the design, construction and installation of wind turbines, as well as the operation and maintenance services’ management on 16,300 MW.
Gamesa has some thirty factories in Europe, the US, China, India and Brazil and a global headcount of 8,000.
The company is also a global benchmark in the development, construction and sale of wind farms. Gamesa currently boasts a pipeline of 23,800 MW at varying stages of development in Europe, the Americas and Asia.