The Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has announced a series of deals by UK companies that will lead to hundreds of jobs in the engineering, aerospace and automotive sectors. The announcement was made during the keynote address at the British Business Embassy on advanced engineering excellence being held at Lancaster House on Friday.
Senior representatives of major global companies such as Airbus, Jaguar Land Rover, JCB, McLaren Racing, Nissan, Rolls-Royce, Siemens, Atkins, GKN and Spirit AeroSystems were in attendance and participated in panel-led discussions about the strength of the UK as a trading partner and the investment location of choice.
The Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, said: "The skills and expertise of British businesses are gold medal standard and highly sought after across the world.
"The UK is one of the top ten manufacturers in the world. Our manufacturing sector is a national success story and lies right at the heart of our strategy for economic recovery and growth.
"The announcements being made today will create and safeguard jobs and stimulate growth. They are a welcome boost to British business and a vote of confidence in the UK."
The summit explored the UK's capability in this high growth sector and investments into the UK; how the collaboration between academia and business has helped the UK retain and build its leading edge position; supply chain excellence and British engineering.
Business Secretary Vince Cable said: "The key to a sustainable and balanced economy is having a long-term approach to growth, investing in manufacturing technology, R&D and skills so we have the right talent to make the most of the recovery.
"Working with business, we are taking steps to strengthen the UK's manufacturing capability, ensuring a better business environment that will address barriers to growth, encourage innovation, exports and inward investment as well as build UK supply chains."
The event is one of 17 global business summits taking place during the Games, organised by UK Trade & Investment.
The following companies chose to profile their international business at the British Business Embassy:
- The Get It Group LLC, of the US, working with Tbilisi Aircraft Manufacturing, based in Georgia, and MARKET-MATS, from the Ukraine, have signed an exclusivity agreement to locate their advanced manufacturing campuses in the Hereford Enterprise Zone and Model Farm Ross-on-Wye. Each of the two advanced manufacturing campuses is expected to create at least 500 high tech manufacturing jobs and once established the sites are predicted to increase local spending power by around £20 million per annum. Furthermore, each campus will have its own apprenticeship training school and at least 10% of the employees will come through the schools at any one time, providing much need employment for the young people in the region.
- Airbus, the world's leading civil aircraft manufacturer, has announced that it will be recruiting 169 apprentices and graduates as part of its 2012 Direct Entry Graduate and Apprentices Programmes in September, in addition to its recruitment of around 600 employees in the UK during 2012. This expansion is driven by Airbus's latest aircraft developments, such as the A350 XWB and A320neo, and the increase in production due to strong global demand. In an important milestone, the first A350 XWB wing was assembled this week at the new Airbus factory in Wales, which was purpose-built to produce wings for the A350 XWB family of aircraft. To date, over 540 of these aircraft have been ordered.
- Bifrangi, an Italian steel forger, is expanding its business in the UK. An investment of ?50 (£39) million in a new steel forge in Lincoln will create 50 jobs and safeguard 100 jobs. The company has just received official planning permission to start the installation of the new forge in October.
- Pirelli Group, a leading tyre manufacturer, has committed to the expansion of the company's activities in the UK. The company is today announcing a £11.4m investment in research and development; creating 37 new and protecting 120 UK jobs. The development of products in Carlisle will result in a further £9m investment in new process machinery for volume production, which will secure existing direct and indirect jobs. In January 2010, Pirelli won the Innovation Award at the UK-Italy Business Awards in Milan.
- GKN plc, the global engineering group headquartered in the UK, has announced investment of more than £12m to increase the capacity of its GKN Driveline (Birmingham) and GKN Land Systems (Telford) facilities that, respectively, design and manufacture products and provide services for the automotive and the agricultural, construction, mining and industrial machinery markets. GKN's expansion reflects both the company's confidence in the UK car manufacturing sector and the growth in its international contracts being fulfilled from the UK.
- Precision Technologies Group (PCT), a leading machine tool design company, based in Lancashire, has announced the sale of two machines to a major state-owned Chinese company producing screw air compressors and refrigeration rotors in a deal worth £3.3 million. The company has also been approached by a well established central European based firm to supply several pairs of large precision rotors in a deal valued at £1 million. This project is a model of pan-European collaboration combining European compressor design and UK machining expertise. These projects and other ongoing work have resulted in the creation of two new UK-based jobs for the company.
- Cella Energy, based in Harwell Oxfordshire, is an advanced materials and technologies sector company that specialises in safe, low-cost hydrogen storage technology. Through the company's Research and Development base at Florida's Kennedy Space Center, Cella Energy is working with NASA on advanced research programmes in areas such as space satellite radiation shielding. The deal with NASA will help generate up to 25 jobs in the UK for the company. Later this year, Cella will be aiming to secure £6 million worth of investment to support ongoing projects in the UK and US.
- BGS International, the Nottingham-based independent "spin out" enterprise of the British Geological Survey, which specialises in geoscience/geological surveys, has won a £97,000 tender to assist the Indian Government in designing the technical specifications and selecting contractors for a high-resolution airborne geophysical survey programme. The survey will cover India's entire onshore and offshore territory. BGS International hopes to play a significant future role within a year or so in assisting the Geological Survey of India in implementing its airborne geophysical programme. It is expected that several further consultancy positions will be created when the larger programme is implemented.