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Work has started to develop an advanced auto-components plant at the Fort William aluminium smelter site in the Highlands.

GFG Alliance companies, Liberty British Aluminium and SIMEC Lochaber Power, have started developing the site as part of a £120 million first phase investment in the area, which will create a mix of up to 600 new direct and indirect jobs. The overall investment scheme aims to create 1,000 direct and 1,000 indirect jobs, as well as adding £1 billion to the local economy.

In a further milestone today, 03 March, Cabinet Secretary Fergus Ewing switched on SIMEC’s new £10m bio-diesel power plants at Fort William.
The facilities will boost renewable energy supply to the, making its the UK’s greenest metal-producing facility.

GFG Alliance acquired the smelter and two associated hydro-power stations for £330m last year, securing hundreds of jobs.

Chaired by Cabinet Secretary Fergus Ewing, the new group also includes representatives from The Highlands Council, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and other bodies and individuals.

Executive Chairman of the GFG Alliance, Sanjeev Gupta, said: “I am delighted to report excellent progress in our work programme with partners in Scottish Government and local agencies. One of the reasons we invested in the Highlands was because people welcomed us here. That’s been reinforced by the positive response of the many agencies in the new Lochaber Delivery Group who showed today that they are eager to play their part in delivering the goal of a clean, competitive and sustainable manufacturing sector in the Highlands.”

Cabinet Secretary Ewing said: “We have built up excellent working relations with Liberty and SIMEC over the past 18 months as they have invested heavily in Scottish industry. Through the Lochaber Delivery Group look forward to continuing to work with them to facilitate and maximise the opportunity their investments will bring. That includes planning for housing and associated services, the construction of the new factory and the right training provision for workers. “With the first meeting of the Lochaber Delivery Group today, and redevelopment work at the smelter now underway, an exciting new chapter in the history of the local area has now begun.”

Source – Build Scotland

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