£9m plant is un­veiled Man­u­fac­tur­ing cen­tre will sup­ply air­craft and car in­dus­tries

Paisley Daily Express - - Front Page - Gavin McI­nally

Plans for a £ 9 mil­lion man­u­fac­tur­ing plant were un­veiled by Scot­land’s First Min­is­ter yes­ter­day.

The spe­cial­ist cen­tre in Ren­frew will man­u­fac­ture light­weight ma­te­ri­als for air­crafts and the car in­dus­try.

Ni­cola Stur­geon an­nounced that the £8.9 mil­lion Light­weight Man­u­fac­tur­ing Cen­tre will be cre­ated in the for­mer Doosan Bab­cock fa­cil­ity in West­way.

It will be run by the Uni­ver­sity of Strath­clyde’s Ad­vanced Form­ing Re­search Cen­tre (AFRC) in Inchin­nan.

Speak­ing in Ren­frew­shire yes­ter­day, the First Min­is­ter said: “A vi­brant and in­no­va­tive man­u­fac­tur­ing base is crit­i­cal to Scot­land’s eco­nomic suc­cess and to cre­at­ing skilled em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties for the fu­ture.

“The Light­weight Man­u­fac­tur­ing Cen­tre will help Scot­tish busi­nesses take ad­van­tage of the fact that sec­tors such as aerospace and the au­to­mo­tive in­dus­try are mak­ing more and more use of light­weight ma­te­ri­als.

“It will de­liver cut­ting edge re­search and de­vel­op­ment projects with and for com­pa­nies in Scot­land.

“Scot­land en­joys re­sources few na­tions can match, in­clud­ing one of the most highly- ed­u­cated work­forces in Europe, a long-stand­ing rep­u­ta­tion for ex­cel­lence in in­no­va­tion and en­gi­neer­ing and an in­ter­na­tion­al­lyre­garded brand.”

Fund­ing for the Light­weight Man­u­fac­tur­ing Cen­tre will con­sist of £ 3.9mil­lion from the Scot­tish Govern­ment, £3.4mil­lion from Scot­tish En­ter­prise and £ 1.6mil­lion from the Ad­vanced Form­ing Re­search Cen­tre.

Ren­frew­shire Coun­cil Leader Iain Nicolson last night wel­comed the in­vest­ment in the area. He said: “Ren­frew­shire is al­ready home to lead­ers in man­u­fac­tur­ing and the an­nounce­ment to­day to de­velop the Light­weight Man­u­fac­tur­ing Cen­tre is fan­tas­tic fur­ther in­vest­ment in this sec­tor and great news for the area.

“I’m sure it is a wel­come boost for the aerospace man­u­fac­tur­ing sec­tor, with the Cen­tre be­ing de­vel­oped on the doorstep of Glas­gow Air­port, which con­tin­ues to play a piv­otal role in the Ren­frew­shire, Glas­gow re­gion and na­tional econ­omy.

“This an­nounce­ment is recog­ni­tion of the ex­per­tise and en­vi­ron­ment R e n f re w s h i re prov i d e s and we are com­mit­ted to en­hanc­ing this fur­ther, bring­ing more highly - skilled job op­por­tu­ni­ties to Ren­frew­shire.

“This has been a key fo­cus of our Glas­gow Air­port In­vest­ment Area project – part of the Glas­gow City Re­gion City Deal - to fa­cil­i­tate the cre­ation of a world class busi­ness and com­mer­cial lo­ca­tion in the heart of Ren­frew­shire, con­nected by air, sea and land.

“It is a ma­jor project which will bet­ter link com­mu­ni­ties and pro­vide the per­fect en­vi­ron­ment for ad­vanced man­u­fac­tur­ing in Scot­land to flour­ish.”

The Na­tional Man­u­fac­tur­ing In­sti­tute for Scot­land will equip man­u­fac­tur­ers to com­pete in fu­ture in­ter­na­tional mar­kets and sup­port the trans­for­ma­tion of Scot­land’s man­u­fac­tur­ing in­dus­try in terms of in­no­va­tion and dig­i­tal op­por­tu­ni­ties, cre­at­ing sus­tain­able, high­value and highly skilled jobs.

An­drew Colquhoun, CEO Doosan Bab­cock, added: “Doosan Bab­cock are hon­oured that this fa­cil­ity will be lo­cated within the Ren­frew site, and look for­ward to sup­port­ing the ini­tia­tive and strength­en­ing our links with both AFRC and Strath­clyde Uni­ver­sity.”

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