Lowestoft: UKTI-backed tour aims to open up energy sector opportunities in China

The Chinese delegation at CLS Offshore with managing director Scott McMillan and business delivery d

The Chinese delegation at CLS Offshore with managing director Scott McMillan and business delivery director Simon Thorne, together with Alan Highet of UK Trade and Investment. - Credit: Archant

A delegation of Chinese business leaders has visited a number of firms involved in the region’s burgeoning renewable energy sector.

Their tour, organised with the help of UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) and designed to open up opportunities for UK firms in China, included visits to Sebmarine SLP, OrbisEnergy and the Greater Gabbard windfarm land base in Lowestoft.

They also visited CLS Offshore in Great Yarmouth and the Scroby Sands visitor centre in north Norfolk, as well as attending a breakfast organised by the East of England Energy Group (EEEGR).

Alan Highet, UKTI’s international trade adviser, environmental and energy, said the visit intended to create openings for British companies to work in China, rather than the Chinese looking to invest in the UK.

The East of England was a key region because of its range of offshore windpower skills and expertise from development through to operations and maintenance.

“It is also a region which seems to offer a unique spirit of cooperation and coordination between the businesses involved in the sector,” he added.

Ms Zhu Li from IT power, who was among the Chinese delegates, said their five-day study tour, which also included visits to Newcastle and Liverpool, was the first official visit since the setting up of a Memorandum of Understanding between the two governments aimed at developing UK business opportunities to help the rapidly emerging windpower industry in China.