(L - R): Tees Valley mayor Ben Houchen and Secretary of State for Scotland, Alister Jack MP.
Matthew Neville

Scottish Secretary visits Teesside following region’s £3bn investment in Freeport and green energy sector

The Secretary of State for Scotland, Alister Jack MP, has visited the region to see firsthand the progress made on the Teesside Freeport.

Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen hosted Mr Jack on his fact-finding mission to understand how development of the region’s Freeport, the UK’s biggest and first operational, can inform Scotland’s plans for its own “green Freeports”.

With just over a week to go before bidding closes on the competition for the two Scottish Green Freeports, Mr Jack was given a tour of the major clean energy projects and investments taking place within the Teesside Freeport.

There is already lots of action happening at the Freeport, with almost £3bn of investment being made across its sites in the region.

Major clean energy projects such as SeAH Wind’s £300m offshore wind facility and Net Zero Teesside Power’s gas-fired power plant with carbon capture, utilisation and storage capabilities are ramping up now, set to create thousands of jobs.

During his tour, the Scottish Secretary visited the £107m South Bank Quay, which is currently under development and when complete will support SeAH Wind’s monopile facility, the biggest of such in the world.

Mayor Houchen said: “It is an honour to welcome the Scottish Secretary onto our site and show him everything we’ve achieved with the Teesside Freeport and how far it has come in just a few short months since its launch.

“We’re pioneering the cleaner, healthier and safer industries of the future, with many of them coming to our area because of our Freeport status.”

Secretary of State for Scotland, Alister Jack, added: “Outside of the EU, the UK now has the freedom to do things differently - including setting up new freeports to turbo-charge trade.

“UK Freeports are a key part of the UK Government’s Levelling Up strategy, they will bring innovation, jobs, prosperity and regeneration. The Teesside Freeport has been a tremendous success from the get-go, attracting business and investment to the area.

“The Teesside Freeport, the first in the UK, is a fantastic example of what can be achieved. It has already secured multi-million-pound investment in renewables production, creating highly-skilled jobs and contributing to our future energy security.”

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