Yorkshire firms urged to join the nuclear revolution

Posted on 18 Feb 2012
China’s social media map
China’s social media map

In anticipation of Yorkshire becoming a ‘nuclear hub’, electronic goods-manufacturer Elonex is moving some of its operations back to Coventry from China, creating 400 jobs.

A series of supplier days where local manufacturers can discuss their products with buyers from the nuclear energy sector are being planned by the Nuclear AMRC.

The move has been subsidised by a £2m government grant, a £6m government-guaranteed banking facility and £2m from Elonex shareholders.

Martin McKervey, a partner at law firm Nabarro – a headline sponsor of Sheffield’s Global Manufacturing Festival 2012, said: “It is hoped that Yorkshire engineering companies specialising in instrumentation, valves, pumps and other high-end products can grab pole position in this sector as the UK is about to see its largest-ever new-build programme for nuclear energy.

There is a growing trend for Chinsese FDI internationally, but China has been reasonably reticent when allowing foreign companies invest in its country.

Nick Smith, chief exec at Elonex said that his labour costs [compared to that in China] are negligible when you factor in freight, reverse logistics and import duty.

So, jobs may continue to be created in the manufacturing and engineering sector – particularly for the jobs that require more skill.