A £31 million investment in a north-east manufacturing base will deliver a massive boost to the region’s subsea sector, an industry chief said yesterday.
Supported by a £4.9m Scottish Enterprise grant, US oil service giant Baker Hughes, a GE company (BHGE) will develop a centre of excellence at its site in Montrose and create 100 new jobs.
Subsea UK chief executive Neil Gordon said the plans would keep the north-east at the forefront of global efforts to pioneer new technology.
The base will be one of the most advanced in the world, boasting facilities for testing and assembly, research and development and workforce training.
Employees will have access to virtual reality tools, industrial 3D printing, automation and sensor-equipped machines.
BHGE will construct a new 43,055sq ft building and expand an existing warehouse.
Work on the project is under way, with completion expected early next year. Equipment built at the centre will be capable of supporting projects across the world.
The firm intends to develop products which can lower costs, enhance productivity and lower the carbon footprint of oil and gas operations in demanding environments.
Mr Gordon said: “For several decades, the UK has pioneered subsea technology and expertise to become recognised as the global leader in subsea.
“World class facilities such as BHGE’s will ensure that the country continues to lead the way in technology, training and manufacturing for many years to come.”
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “This facility will bring new jobs and investment to Scotland. And as one of the most advanced centres of its type in the world, it will underline our international reputation for oil and gas innovation, developing the products and services the industry needs for the future.”
Graham Gillies, a vice-president at BHGE, said: “Subsea technology is undoubtedly one of the UK’s greatest export
success stories, with industry-leading technology and solutions being designed and manufactured here, and installed across basins worldwide.”