East Midlands Freeport set for take-off

Published: 4 March 2021

east midlands freeport

The East Midlands site will be one of eight new Freeports in England.

The East Midlands received a major economic boost yesterday (Wednesday 3 March) with the government’s announcement that it will be one of eight new Freeports in England, creating an estimated 60,000 new skilled jobs for the region.

This news recognises the joint work and efforts by partners from both the public and private sectors and politicians from all parties to deliver an ambitious and innovative project that will transform the region’s social and economic future,

Based around the East Midlands Airport and Gateway Industrial Cluster (EMAGIC) in North West Leicestershire, Uniper’s Ratcliffe-on-Soar power station site in Rushcliffe in Nottinghamshire and the East Midlands Intermodal Park (EMIP) in South Derbyshire, the Freeport will bring significant investment to develop and drive innovation, alternative energy sources and green technology supporting SME’s and large regional employers, including Rolls-Royce, Toyota, and Alstom (formerly Bombardier).

The East Midlands Freeport bid was submitted by a consortium led by the Local Enterprise Partnerships representing Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, Leicester, and Leicestershire. It included private sector businesses and local authorities, with support from universities, business groups, local MP’s and the proposed East Midlands Development Corporation.

The consortium will now work with the government to develop the proposals into an Outline Business Case providing further information on how the Freeport will be delivered.

Elizabeth Fagan CBE, Chair of the D2N2 LEP, said:

I am delighted with today’s news. The East Midlands Freeport will create thousands of jobs, accelerate the region’s commitment to decarbonisation, and drive low carbon energy investments.

Our bid was built on strong collaboration across business, local authorities and other sectors and will deliver a powerful and unique proposition not just for our region but for the whole of the UK.

Chris Poulter, Leader of Derby City Council, said:

I am very pleased to hear today’s announcement. Having a Freeport so close to Derby is a major boost to our future economic plans, bringing with it the potential for many thousands of jobs for the city and the region.

Derby is a city of innovation already home to world class brands serving global markets and we look forward to working with Government, the private sector and our local partners to leverage the full benefits of Freeport status.

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