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Businesses urged to grasp multi-million-pound nuclear supply chain opportunities

PUBLISHED: 16:39 06 November 2018 | UPDATED: 16:55 06 November 2018

Businesses in Essex and Suffolk are being encouraged to bid for £500m worth of contracts as part of the development of Hinkley Point C  Picture: EDF Energy

Businesses in Essex and Suffolk are being encouraged to bid for £500m worth of contracts as part of the development of Hinkley Point C Picture: EDF Energy

EDF Energy

Businesses in Suffolk and Essex are being encouraged to bid for £500m worth of contracts as part of the development of Hinkley Point C.

With Hinkley Point C constructor EDF keen to include Suffolk and Essex companies in the bidding process for contracts worth £500m – to gain experience ahead of further power station developments at Sizewell and Bradwell – a huge boost to the local economy, creating hundreds of jobs, could be in the offing.

Now Lloyds Banking Group is urging businesses to apply – and is providing a dedicated £100m infrastructure fund to help local organisations to scale up to meet the demand, as well as offering mentoring and advice.

The fund is designed to provide SME businesses with the financial backing to bid for supply chain contracts. In addition, the bank is working closely with potential suppliers to advise on how best to address skills shortages, improve financial practices and explore the possibility of joint ventures, as a way of securing contracts.

A further two nuclear power stations are set to be developed at Sizewell and Bradwell in the next 10 years, presenting a long-term opportunity for local businesses.

A supply chain seminar set up by Invest ESSEX with partners Lloyds Banking Group, Invest in Suffolk, Suffolk and Essex Chambers of Commerce and EDF Energy took place last week in Braintree, and a second one is planned for February in Suffolk.

Speaking at the event last week, Gareth Oakley, Lloyds Banking Group ambassador for the East of England, said: “Hinkley Point C is one of the UK’s biggest investment and construction projects and we’re working with businesses in the East of England to help them benefit from the supply chain opportunities.

“The support we’re offering forms part of our Helping Britain Prosper Plan, which takes us beyond ‘business as usual’, tackling the social and economic issues that matter most to people, businesses and communities.

“We identified Hinkley Point C as a significant development for small businesses and our message to them is – we want to help you take advantage of the opportunity, position your business and secure contracts.”

Organisations that wish to apply for contracts as part of the Hinkley Point C development should register their interest at

www.hinkleysupplychain.co.uk

For businesses interested in attending the February seminar, please email business.support@investessex.co.uk



KEY PLAYERS

Robert Edge, Invest ESSEX inward investment manager

“Business doesn’t see a county border, just opportunities. It’s a challenge for both Essex and Suffolk to maximise the supply opportunities, which is why Invest Essex has put this event together so that, with our partners in Suffolk, we can help get

companies into the nuclear supply chain.”

Gary Nel, managing director, Geocurve, Kelvedon

“There is so much opportunity for the Essex and Suffolk communities at Sizewell and Bradwell, but it is important to get on early. It is imperative for Essex and Suffolk companies not to wait until the nuclear power stations are built here – transfer skills developed at Hinkley over to Essex and Suffolk in the future. Being such a specialised business, we want to get on the EDF supply chain now and other companies should also be looking to do the same, to make that transfer to Sizewell and Bradwell simpler.”

Gareth Oakley, Lloyds Banking Group ambassador for the East of England

“We identified Hinkley Point C as a significant development for small businesses and our message to them is – we want to help you take advantage of the opportunity, position your business and secure contracts. The support we’re offering forms part of our Helping Britain Prosper Plan, which takes us beyond business as usual, tackling the social and economic issues that matter most to people, businesses and communities.”

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