Backers say the investment will deliver up to 9,465 new jobs for the region and the First Minister says it will transform the region’s economy. The £1.3bn Swansea Bay City Region deal will be signed today.
First Minister Carwyn Jones says it will transform the economy of south west Wales and Swansea council leader Rob Stewart described it as a “game-changing moment” for the region. “With a total value of £1.3bn, it will be Wales’s largest city deal, and will turbo-charge the region’s economic prosperity and create up to 35,000 jobs when spin-offs are taken into account,” he said.
Prime Minister Theresa May is in Swansea today to sign the deal, and said: “The deal is a great example of what can be achieved when the UK government , the Welsh government and local authorities work together to secure a deal that benefits the city and the whole of Wales.”
The deal will fund projects covering the local authorities of Neath Port Talbot, Swansea, Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire over 15 years. Eleven major projects are planned across the region in the fields of energy, smart manufacturing, innovation and life science.
The proposed funding consists of:
£241m of capital split between the UK and Welsh governments
£360m of other public sector funding – through local authority borrowing powers
£673m of private sector funding
Swansea Bay City Deal
£1.3bn over 15 years
Total value £241m
Welsh and UK Government £360m
Local authority borrowings £673m
Private sector support Nearly 10,000
New jobs created £1.8bn
The investment will deliver up to 9,465 new jobs for the region, with claims this will contribute to an uplift in gross value added (GVA) of £1.8bn .
It is based around four strands:
Internet of economic acceleration
Internet of energy
Internet of life sciences and wellbeing
Internet of smart manufacturing
The planned projects for the Swansea Bay City Region
Life Science and Wellbeing Village
Based at Delta Lakes, Llanelli, it is being led by Carmarthen Council, as part of the Arch (A Regional Collaboration for Health) programme.
The £200m project aims to create 1,800 high-quality jobs and boost the economy by £467m over 15 years.
The proposals include an Institute of Life Sciences with laboratory and clinic space and an incubation facility for business start-up, research and development; a wellness hub incorporating a state-of-the-art sports and leisure centre, a wellbeing centre, a wellness hotel and an assisted living village set within a green eco-park.
The project involves the construction of a creative and digital hub and the development of a creative industry sector cluster. It will create around 200 jobs and help the local economy and support the Welsh language.
Swansea City and Waterfront digital district
The £169m project aims to generate more than 1,300 jobs. It will create 100,000 square feet of new office space on Kingsway in the city centre for tech businesses and to support local enterprise and entrepreneurial talent.
This project will also create a box village development on the University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s under-construction Waterfront Innovation Quarter in SA1. Built from shipping containers, this will provide affordable space for start-up firms with links to the university’s academic programme.
This project will also enable the digitalisation of the 5,000 to 6,000-seat indoor arena planned for Swansea’s St David’s development site, and the development of a digital square with digital screens and digital artworks.
The Life Science & Wellbeing Campus project
This project will expand research and innovation infrastructure at the Morriston campus alongside world-leading clinical delivery. In addition, a reconfiguration in real estate will see an expansion of the Singleton Campus where a growing cluster of medical and health technology businesses currently operate and collaborate.
The Factory of the Future project
The aim is to support and continue to build the region’s strong manufacturing base, by creating a network of smart manufacturing innovation centres to provide small and medium businesses (SMEs) with an opportunity to invest in leading edge manufacturing and digital technologies. This project aims to put the region and its enterprises at the forefront of digital and data based manufacturing.
Pembroke Dock Marine
In Pembrokeshire the Pembroke Dock Marine is a £76m project to establish a marine energy centre around the Port of Milford Haven. It will become the centre for marine energy development, fabrication, testing and deployment.
Neath Port Talbot
The Centre of Excellence for Next Generation Digital Services
The project aims to bridge the gap between research and innovation and the ability to launch develop and grow commercial opportunities.
The Steel Science Centre
Based in Neath Port Talbot, the Centre will focus on providing commercial research and development to address the current and future challenges of sustaining steel-making capacity in the region and the UK. It will work with industry to reduce its carbon impact and place the region at the cutting edge of low carbon production. It will also provide support for the developments in the steel supply chain and downstream operations.
Projects for the whole region
The Digital Infrastructure project
The Pembrokeshire-led project aims to improve broadband and mobile continuity underpinning all projects within the deal.
Homes as Power Stations
This project will target both new build housing projects and retrofit of existing housing. Led by Neath Port Talbot council, this project will deliver innovative low carbon homes, supporting carbon reduction targets. The project aims to provide security of housing supply in the region and support a reduction of demand on electricity and gas grid systems. A major aim will be to reduce fuel poverty and its impact on health, together with a focus on digital connectivity and smart metering.
Skills and Talent Initiative
Led by Carmarthenshire, a skills and talent initiative will support skills development for all 11 of the city deal projects spread across the Swansea Bay Region. This initiative seeks to ensure the creation, attraction and retention of a workforce equipped to deliver each of the City Deal projects.