Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership has announced that it is currently the fourth most successful LEP in the UK in terms of jobs created per head as a result of foreign direct investment (FDI).
According to UK Trade & Investment, the agency responsible for facilitating FDI, the number of new jobs created in Cheshire and Warrington as a result of inward investment projects has risen 85% year on year.
In 2014/15 1510 new jobs were created across some 23 individual investments. The Cheshire and Warrington LEP supported 78% of these projects, 39% of which were considered High Value and 26% Good Value – both well above the national average.
Ten projects emanated from the Americas, nine from EMEA and four from Asia, echoing a similar profile to 2013/14 and was in line with national trends. Existing investors in Cheshire and Warrington were responsible for 16 of the projects.
The widespread investment across the sub region that has contributed to the increase in jobs includes: The new Vauxhall Astra being built in Ellesmere Port which has accounted for 300 new jobs; the expansion by Areva and Phonak in Warrington that has resulted in 320 jobs; the creation of 200 jobs by global biopharmaceutical company Bristol Myers Squibb in Chester and the creation of 140 jobs in Crewe by Regus and Assurant Solutions.
A closer look at the projects reveals strong representation across a breadth of industry sectors with five projects in both Advanced Engineering and Manufacturing and Business Services, and four in Information Technology and Electronic Communications and Energy, Environment and Infrastructure.
However, the star performing sector was in Life Sciences and Healthcare where the number of projects has leapt from one in 2013/14 to five in 2014/15.
Chair of the Cheshire and Warrington LEP Christine Gaskell said: “By choosing to bring high value, high quality investments into Cheshire and Warrington, investors are acknowledging our excellent skills base, fantastic connectivity, enviable quality of life and enthusiastic support for business and entrepreneurship.
“With a number of outstanding opportunities soon to come on stream especially in Life Sciences and Energy, I fully expect our LEP area to forge ahead in the coming years.”