Production of Nissan Juke and Qashqai at Nissan Sunderland Plant
The Invest North East England team works to attract inward investment into the North East Combined Authority area on behalf of seven constituent local authorities, with a combined population of nearly two million.
The North East Combined Authority area stretches from County Durham in the South through the Tyne and Wear conurbation to Northumberland in the North. The North East has a tremendous amount to offer companies looking to set up or relocate to the area. Along with some exceptional home-grown companies such as Atom Bank, SMD and Sage plc, the area has attracted some truly transformational inward investments over the years with global giants such as Nissan, Hitachi Rail, Hewlett Packard, GE Oil and Gas, Komatsu, Ubisoft, MSD and Siemens, just some of the businesses locating significant operations and investing in the North East.
In the last two and a half years, the North East has secured 242 inward investments from the UK and abroad, leading to more than 13,000 new jobs and safeguarding thousands more. So why are so many companies choosing to locate in North East England?
Rapidly growing business base
With over 49,000 companies in the region, we have experienced one of the UK’s highest growth rates in company numbers between 2014 and 2015, second only to London, offering a fantastic market opportunity for investors. We are also the only region in the UK to experience a positive balance of trade (we export more goods than we import), demonstrating the strength of the fantastic manufacturing sector embedded in the region.
Skilled and dedicated workforce
With a workforce of 1.2 million, the North East has a large and skilled labour market. Investors to the region also benefit from an exceptionally loyal labour force with some of the UK’s lowest labour turnover rates.
World-class education and training
The region has four excellent universities with 80,000 students studying at Durham, Newcastle, Northumbria and Sunderland. We’re also home to a variety of national innovation centres which offer research and development and innovation expertise to companies in a variety of key sectors. These include: the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult; Digital Catapult; North East Satellite Applications Centre; National Centre for Ageing Innovation; the National Centre for Subsea and Offshore Engineering; and soon the National Institute for Smart Data.
Competitive cost base and exceptional quality of life
Businesses coming into the North East benefit from lower wage and property costs compared to most other areas in the UK. The standard of education, training and apprenticeships are some of the best in the country which means that companies get more for their money.
In addition, ‘real wages’ are amongst the best in the UK (wages go further due to a lower cost base), and our world-renowned natural environment, heritage assets and vibrant cities and towns all help make the North East an area with an exceptional quality of life.
Fantastic connectivity and infrastructure
The North East is blessed with superb connectivity which has recently led to Newcastle being named the best connected urban area in the UK (2016 UK Prosperity Index). Newcastle International Airport connects the region to over 80 worldwide destinations and carries over four million passengers a year. The region has three major deep sea ports, Blyth, Sunderland and Tyne, three major train stations with daily direct trains to London, Manchester and Scotland in under three hours and
we have some of the least congested roads in the UK.
The Invest North East England team is tasked with proactively marketing the North East’s key attributes to national and international investors and helping them to locate in the area. Key sectors targeted are: IT & digital, energy, life sciences, automotive & advanced manufacturing and financial, professional & business services. The team works closely with all seven local authorities in the area, and the following pages highlight what can be found in each of these.