£80 million loan for nuclear components supply announced

The Government today announced an £80 million loan to a UK firm to build a major facility to supply components for the civil nuclear industry.

Business Secretary Lord Mandelson said the move would help propel Sheffield Forgemasters to the forefront of world markets.

He said the decision to offer support to the company was part of a strategic intervention to develop the nuclear supply chain able to meet the demand of the next generation of nuclear power stations to be built in the UK and to compete for orders worldwide.

The loan offer, together with participation in the project from nuclear power firm Westinghouse, will enable Sheffield Forgemasters to build a major manufacturing facility for ultra heavy forgings for civil nuclear power and other markets.

The company will become only the second in the world with necessary nuclear accreditation able to make the largest forgings required to make the critical components required for the global civil nuclear industry.

Lord Mandelson, who is visiting the company today, said: "This is not just help for one company. Today we're announcing a willingness to invest that will make the UK a leading provider in the nuclear and the low carbon supply chain.

"Our high value manufacturing, knowledge base and highly skilled workforce mean with the right investment, like today's, the UK can win a huge amount of business in this growth sector.

"This is Government and industry working together to build the success of British manufacturing. This will help to realise the potential of our industrial base to be world leading, export led, and creating jobs and value here at home."

Currently the UK is able to supply around 50% of the plant and equipment for a new nuclear programme in the UK but with investment this could increase to 70%, the Government said.

Business minister Pat McFadden added: "We are a country that believes in making things and this investment could be very important for manufacturing in the UK.

"It will place Britain in a much stronger position to develop the nuclear supply chain which has benefits not just in the UK market but potentially in exports too as many countries build more nuclear power stations in the years to come. It is a strategic investment to help Britain build a lower carbon manufacturing economy."

The Government today also committed to co-fund the delivery of up to 1,000 apprenticeships a year in the nuclear energy sector.

Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Miliband said: "Moving to a low carbon economy is crucial to tackling climate change and ensuring our energy security, and it's a transition that provides opportunities to boost jobs, skills and investment in Britain.

"The support we are providing for Sheffield Forgemasters, and our commitment to boosting apprenticeships in nuclear, show our determination to support the industries of the future."

The offer announced today will enable Sheffield Forgemasters to build a 15,000 tonne press and finishing facility which can produce the ultra-large forgings such as reactor pressure vessels that are integral to modern civil nuclear reactors.

Currently these can only be produced in Japan for the global market. This will create around 180 direct skilled jobs in the long term and many more during the construction phase.

Michael Macdonald of the Prospect union welcomed the news, adding: "This deal, in which Westinghouse Electric is also investing, adds a new and vital link to the UK nuclear supply chain. It will help pave the way for three generations' worth of high-quality new jobs at each site where new nuclear build is planned.

"Not only is it great news for local job security, but workers at Sheffield Forgemasters will be making a vital product to support new nuclear build in the UK, as well as the global market. This deal provides yet more evidence that new build will bring jobs into the UK supply chain."

Speaking alongside Lord Mandelson at today's launch in Sheffield, Mike Tynan, chief executive of Westinghouse UK, said: "Today's announcement is yet another tangible indicator that new nuclear build is becoming a reality for the UK and around the world.

" Westinghouse has long operated a 'We Buy Where We Build' approach, and this news serves as further evidence of our confidence in the UK supply chain and commitment to build here.

"I hope it will send a strong signal to other UK companies who may be considering the wide range of opportunities offered by the nuclear industry."

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said: "This announcement is great news for jobs, the fight against climate change and the future of the UK economy.

"This is a vindication of the Government's proactive industrial strategy and shows that carefully considered state action can play a key role in persuading investors that the UK is serious about growing the businesses of the future."

Life and Style
tech

Sales of the tablet are set to fall again say analysts

News
A Brazilian wandering spider
news

World's most lethal spider found under a bunch of bananas

Life and Style
fashion

British supermodel and hitmaker join forces to launch a 'huge song'

Life and Style
gaming

I Am Bread could actually a challenging and nuanced title

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Sport
Mario Balotelli pictured in the win over QPR
footballInternet reacts to miss shocker for Liverpool striker
News
people
Voices
Sol Campbell near his home in Chelsea
voices
News
i100
News
Kimi the fox cub
newsBurberry under fire from animal rights group - and their star, Kimi
Sport
Fans of Palmeiras looks dejected during the match between Palmeiras and Santos
footballPalmeiras fan killed trying to 'ambush' bus full of opposition supporters
Arts and Entertainment
filmsIt's nearly a wrap on Star Wars: Episode 7, producer reveals
Life and Style
fashion
News
i100
News
<p>Jonathan Ross</p>
<p>Jonathan Ross (or Wossy, as he’s affectionately known) has been on television and radio for an extraordinarily long time, working on a seat in the pantheon of British presenters. Hosting Friday Night with Jonathan Ross for nine years, Ross has been in everything from the video game Fable to Phineas and Ferb. So it’s probably not so surprising that Ross studied at Southampton College of Art (since rebranded Southampton Solent), a university known nowadays for its media production courses.</p>
<p>However, after leaving Solent, Ross studied History at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, now part of the UCL, a move that was somewhat out of keeping with the rest of his career. Ross was made a fellow of the school in 2006 in recognition of his services to broadcasting.</p>
TV

Rumours that the star wants to move on to pastures new

News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Lead Teacher of Thinking School Drive Team and Year 3 Form teacher

Competitive: Notting Hill Prep School: Spring Term 2015 Innovative, ambitious ...

Operations Data Analyst - London - up to £25,000

£20000 - £25000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Operations Data Analyst -...

Programmatic Business Development Manager

£35 - £40000 per annum: Sauce Recruitment: As the Programmatic Business Develo...

Year 5 Teacher

Negotiable: Randstad Education Hull: Randstad Education is currently recruitin...

Day In a Page

Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album
Hugh Bonneville & Peter James: 'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'

How We Met: Hugh Bonneville & Peter James

'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's heavenly crab dishes don't need hours of preparation

Bill Granger's heavenly crab recipes

Scared off by the strain of shelling a crab? Let a fishmonger do the hard work so you can focus on getting the flavours right
Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

After a remarkable conversion from reckless defender to prolific striker, Monaco's ace says he wants to make his loan deal at Old Trafford permanent
Terry Venables: Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England

Terry Venables column

Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England
The Inside Word: Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past

Michael Calvin's Inside Word

Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past