Scotland’s national bank has allocated £30 million to develop one of the country’s major ports.
The funding, from the state-owned Scottish National Investment Bank, will go towards expanding Aberdeen Harbour in what has been described as the largest marine infrastructure project in the UK.
The development, called South Harbour, will be located next to Aberdeen’s Energy Transition Zone, a Scottish Government-funded initiative to accelerate the energy sector’s transition to net-zero emissions, and is set to strengthen the city’s position as a “key port hub” for the UK’s large-scale energy transition efforts.
The new harbour has been designed to accommodate larger, wider, and deeper vessels, while providing land-side facilities for the expansion of Scotland’s offshore wind industry.
Eilidh Mactaggart, chief executive of the Scottish National Investment Bank, said: “The South Harbour project is a critical platform for the transition in Scotland, delivering a high-specification facility which will shape industry in Aberdeen for decades to come and provide valuable space, as well as water access, for both offshore wind supply chain providers and offshore wind developers.”
Ms Mactaggart said the development will provide supply chain benefits for the recently announced ScotWind – a programme managed by Crown Estate Scotland which leases areas of the seabed around Scotland for wind farm developments.
Earlier this month, ScotWind awarded contracts to 17 projects worth almost £700 million for new offshore wind farms along the country’s coastline.
Bob Sanguinetti, chief executive of Aberdeen Harbour Board, said the new expansion project will be “a critical asset” in the future of Scotland’s industries.
“The port will provide customers and port users with scalable and flexible infrastructure, making it ideal for space-intense industries such as offshore wind, decommissioning, cargo and cruise,” he said.
“We are months away from opening our South Harbour expansion and look forward to beginning operational trials in the port at the end of the summer.”
The expansion project has also been funded by the European Investment Bank, Scottish Enterprise, and the Aberdeen City Deal.