Essex: Witham company’s China deal could lead to 150 new jobs & £100m boost for Essex

Solar panels

Solar panels - Credit: Archant

A new deal between a Essex-based company and Chinese solar panel manufacturer could result in 150 jobs for the county and an economic boost of £100million.

Witham-based EA-RS Group has signed a joint venture deal with C-Sun, a major solar panel manufacturing company based in the Jiangsu province in China, which has links with Essex.

The new company, called Seesun, will design, make, install and maintain solar panels for businesses, homes and community solar parks across the UK.

Seesun has already invested £1m and created six new jobs in Essex. Eventually it plans to open 40 Seesun centres of excellence throughout the UK.

The deal is the result of work by Essex International, Essex County Council’s (ECC) international trade arm, which is celebrating 25 years of links with Jiangsu this year.

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It comes just days after Li Xueyong, the Governor of Jiangsu, signed an agreement with ECC leader David Finch to formalise relations between Jiangsu and Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk County Councils.

Kevin Bentley, county councillor for economic growth, said: “This is great news for the county and further evidence of the tremendous value and potential of our important relationship with Jiangsu province.”

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Alan Wheal, chief executive of EA-RS Group said the deal allows customers to buy directly from the manufacturer.

Lu Tingxiu, chairman of C-Sun, added: “We are excited by the opportunities that our new joint venture creates.

“Our global headquarters is based in Nanjing which is in Essex’s partner region of Jiangsu Province and this relationship helped us find a strong Essex business partner to help us expand into the UK market.”

Chris Siddall, Braintree district councillor for prosperity and growth, added: “As a district we have set ourselves ambitious job growth targets to match the level of housing growth in the district over the coming years. This will be done through key investment and also working with partners to help build relations and promote our district as a prime location for growing businesses.

“Witham has much to offer, and this latest news to come from Essex International about the link with Seesun is excellent news for the town.”

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