East Anglia: Welcome for Government investment in offshore wind industry

The Greater Gabbard wind farm

The Greater Gabbard wind farm - Credit: Archant

The announcement of a multi-million pound Government investment in the offshore wind industry and steps to secure contracts for UK firms has been welcomed by in Suffolk.

Tens of millions of pounds are being invested by the Government in the industry to create thousands of jobs and keep the UK as a “world leader” in the sector and marine engineering businesses in Suffolk could stand to benefit from the move, an MP has said.

Ministers said the £66 million funding to improve the supply chain for offshore wind developments, boost innovation and bring new products to market could help the industry contribute £7billion to the economy and create 30,000 jobs by 2020.

Dr Coffey, MP for Suffolk Coastal, said she was pleased that the Government was taking steps to ensure that companies investing in such significant projects would be engaging with UK businesses both at the installation and operational stage.

She said: “This is a really positive move to make sure that if we are going to be spending millions of pounds then Britain’s supply chain is involved.

“A lot of the investment is in the initial installation and then there’s the ongoing maintenance. The East Anglia Array (including East Anglia One) will become the biggest offshore wind farm in the world.”

The Government investment includes £20 million from the regional growth fund for a new manufacturing advisory service to help the UK supply chain become more competitive.

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And £46 million will come from the Technology Strategy Board over five years to link up innovation between Government, industry and academics, and help companies bring new products to market.