Regional growth fund investment reaches £4bn

Regional growth fund investment reaches £4 billionThe government’s Regional Growth Fund (RGF) has now put more than £1 billion in the hands of businesses, which in turn has leveraged nearly £3 billion in private sector investment, Business Secretary Vince Cable announced today.

The fund has also created and safeguarded more than 100,000 direct jobs in the English regions to-date. The news means the fund is now on track to deliver the 573,000 jobs it is projected to deliver by the end of the decade.

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “So far, the Regional Growth Fund has secured £4 billion investment in companies across England – this is a great achievement, helping people and businesses across the country and there is still more to come.

It is proof that RGF is playing a pivotal role in developing innovative technologies; providing highly skilled jobs and giving businesses the confidence to invest in the UK.”

Universities, Science and Cities Minister Greg Clark said: “RGF is a great example of how business and government can work together to create the long-term, highly skilled jobs that are fuelling our recovery and growing our economy.

So far we have supported over 8,000 companies across the country to help them expand, take advantage of new markets and reach their full potential.”

Newquay Airport awarded £6m investment

Newquay Airport awarded £6m investmentBusiness Secretary Vince Cable has welcomed a £6 million investment to create a new business development and up to 750 jobs at the Aerohub in Newquay Cornwall Airport.

The funding for the first phase of the business park at the enterprise zone site includes a £2.3 million investment from the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA).

The scheme also includes a £4 million grant from the European Regional Development Fund Convergence programme, with Cornwall Council providing the land.

The construction programme will start in early October and see completion of phase 1 in June 2015.

Dr Cable said: “Cornwall’s Aerohub is an excellent example of one of the 24 Government-backed enterprise zones that are driving private sector-led growth across England.

“This new funding will help develop valuable infrastructure for the new Business Park to attract increased investment and create more jobs for Newquay and the surrounding area.”

The 53.5 acre business park site will form part of the Aerohub Enterprise Zone and will have space for more than 30,000 sq ft of buildings.

Phase one will ensure the park is investor ready, delivering site services including road access, electricity, water and broadband. The HCA funding also includes a £150,000 contribution to the ‘Rialton Link’ road, adding to the improvement of local infrastructure.

Ian Knight, Head of Area for the Homes and Communities Agency, said: “This is great news for Cornwall. It is an important investment for us because it helps to unlock development on the enterprise zone and act as a spur for further investment and jobs growth.

“We look forward to working with the local partners and using our skills in investment and regeneration to developing a thriving business park. We believe this project will add significant value to the Cornish economy.”

As part of its long term economic plan, the Government set up the 24 enterprise zones as a 25-year project to rebalance the economy and create future centres of excellence in key industries such as aviation, pharmaceutical, offshore energy and automotive. Since their start 3 years ago enterprise zones have created more than 9,000 jobs, attracted more than 300 businesses and secured £1.2 billion of private sector investment.

£100m to support manufacturing and bring trades back to the UK

£100m to support manufacturing and bring trades back to the UKCompanies can now bid for a share of £100 million from a government scheme to help them strengthen their domestic supply chains and help bring manufacturing back to the UK.

The funding will provide research and development support, skills training and investment capital and encourage major new suppliers to ‘reshore’ in the UK.

The announcement comes from the Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI) and is expected to pave the way for new jobs in the building industry.

Five previous rounds of AMSCI funding have secured nearly half a billion pounds of public-private investment for 44 projects in the UK.

Business Secretary, Vince Cable said: “A strong manufacturing sector is vital to a balanced economic recovery, and I want to ensure that Britain’s supply chains are up to the task of supporting the sector in the long term.

“Our industrial strategy, which has given business the confidence to invest, is paying dividends in the reshoring we have seen so far. We will continue to support businesses to secure more highly skilled jobs and a stronger economy.”

It has also included the creation of a ‘National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme’ led by the Aerospace Growth Partnership to address skills shortages and improve R&D collaboration in the aerospace sector. The £35 million project aims to create nearly 5,000 jobs in the supply chain.

Terry Scuoler, Chief Executive at EEF, the manufacturers’ organisation, said: “This is another welcome boost for British manufacturing, which will have a positive impact on the wider economy.

“Our own research shows that in the last 3 years, 1 in 6 companies have re-shored production back to the UK with many turning to a UK-based supply chain for parts and components.

“High value manufacturing creates jobs and wealth here so I’m delighted to see the government getting behind it.”

The manufacturing sector supports two and a half million jobs and contributes almost £140 billion a year to the UK.

Full competition details and information can be found on the AMSCI 2014 website.