A major player in the gas & oil sector which has a Newcastle base is investing £11.5m in research and development and spending £16.3m on capital expenditure.
GE Oil & Gas’ Wellstream based at Walker Riverside has already expanded its production capabilities in a bid to create and protect jobs and now has more than 580 people at its manufacturing sites across the North East.
The company’s expansion project, which was completed last year included the addition of two new 26m diameter 3,000-tonne manufacturing and storage carousels to its existing 2,000-tonne capacity.
The expansion came after the Government awarded GE Oil & Gas a Regional Growth Fund grant of £3m to support the creation of new jobs and allow the business to keep its key technology developments in the UK.
The company exceeded its RGF employment targets by creating 126 jobs at the site.
GE Oil & Gas acquired Wellstream International Ltd in 2011 as part of its continued growth in the offshore technology and services sector.
“This project demonstrates GE’s commitment to invest in our U.K oil and gas production and service operations. We are committed to growing this business while at the same time promoting local employment and economic growth,” said Rod Christie, Vice President Subsea Systems, GE Oil & Gas.
Christie noted the expansion will enable GE to increase the competitiveness of its Newcastle facility, being able to manufacture flexible pipelines for larger remote offshore developments, with the capability to manufacture longer lengths of pipe, reducing the number of mid-line connections, end fittings and leaders and trailers, reducing installation costs.