French agreement to unlock jobs and investment in South West England

6 August 2018

An agreement has been signed between economic development organisations in South West England and Normandy in France, which aims to create jobs, unlock opportunities and attract new investment to both regions.

The Memorandum of Understanding will see Nuclear South West and Nucleopolis work together to connect companies with £50bn worth of nuclear investments in South West England and an annual market in Normandy worth more than £1bn a year.

Nucleopolis, the nuclear division of Normandie Energies, brings together expertise of nearly 100 French organisations, covering research, industry and training, in the fields of energy, health and risk management. The nuclear sector employs around 28,000 people in Normandy.

“This agreement is hugely important to us as it helps build awareness of the South West as a destination for companies to invest in and do business with the nuclear supply chain,” said Matt Burley, Nuclear South West’s chairman.

“France is recognised as being one of the most advanced nuclear nations and Nucleopolis has a significant role to play in helping the industry to grow.

“We look forward to developing our relationship with Nucleopolis and working closely to bring opportunities to the South West and France.”

The agreement follows more than 500 enquiries made to Nuclear South West and its partners during their recent attendance at the World Nuclear Exhibition in Paris. The team is working through these to establish further opportunities to build links with clusters in countries including Canada, Japan and South Africa.

“We welcome the opportunity to work with Nuclear South West in our mission to promote the economic development of the nuclear sector in Normandy,” said Serge Bouffard, Normandie Energies VP in charge of Nucleopolis

“The collaboration enables companies to connect, build relationships and seek opportunities that benefit all of the French and British organisations involved.

“Nucleopolis is the ambassador of French nuclear excellence in Normandy. We will work with Nuclear South West to maintain and develop the sector for the benefit of our regions.”

As part of the agreement, the organisations will share knowledge and opportunities in the nuclear industry and encourage their respective members to explore opportunities to work together.

Nucleopolis has also agreed to lead a business match-making session for companies interested in export and investment at Nuclear South West’s annual conference in Bristol on 19 September.

“It’s great to have Nucleopolis on board for our conference in September, and I am sure those who attend from both regions will see the benefits of this new partnership approach,” added Mr Burley.

The deal follows a report commissioned by NSW which reveals that the South West region is ideally placed to capitalise on economic opportunities worth £50bn to the UK economy. The research states that South West-based SMEs, large companies and training providers could supply £15bn worth of work to the nuclear sector.

For more information or to request an interview, please contact Lucy Ross-Millar at lucyrm@social-communications.co.uk or Ben Lowndes at Social Communications on 07387 140 782 or benl@social-communications.co.uk

Images of The Memorandum of Understanding being signed by Nuclear South West service manager Andy Bates and Serge Bouffard, VP of Normandie Energies in charge of nuclear division of Nucleopolis, can be downloaded here: https://www.dropbox.com/home/Nuclear%20South%20West