Aberdeen Harbour plans get £30 million boost from Scottish National Investment Bank

Plans to expand Aberdeen Harbour have received a £30 million boost from the Scottish National Investment Bank.

The bank’s loan will strengthen the harbour’s position as a key port hub for the UK’s large scale energy transition efforts.

The expansion of Aberdeen has been described as the largest marine infrastructure project in the UK. It is now just months from being operational.

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Developers hope that the expanded facility will provide greater land and water access for offshore wind businesses.

The expansion of Aberdeen Harbour has been described as the largest marine infrastructure project in the UK. It is now just months from being operational.

The increased capacity will also play a vital role delivering the supply chain benefits of the recently announced ScotWind leasing round, supporting the bank’s mission to achieve a “just transition to net zero”.

Aberdeen’s Energy Transition Zone (ETZ) will be located adjacent to the South Harbour development.

Eilidh Mactaggart, chief executive of the Scottish National Investment Bank, said: “The bank is delighted to invest in Aberdeen Harbour and a project strongly aligned with its net zero and place missions.

“The South Harbour project is a critical platform for the just 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.”

Bob Sanguinetti, chief executive of Aberdeen Harbour Board, said: “The Scottish National Investment Bank has recognised the value and importance of the expanded Aberdeen Harbour as a critical asset in the future of Scotland’s industries, and we would like to thank them for their commitment to the project.

“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.

“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 expanded port has been designed to accommodate larger, wider, and deeper vessels, while providing land-side facilities for the expansion of the offshore wind industry.

The project is also funded by the European Investment Bank, Scottish Enterprise, and the Aberdeen City Deal.

As a trust port, Aberdeen Harbour is fully independent and run by a board for the benefit of its stakeholders, with all profits being reinvested back into the business.

The Scottish National Investment Bank will use some £2 billion of Scottish Government funding over its first decade to invest in businesses and projects which aim to help Scotland meet its 2045 net zero carbon target, tackle geographic inequalities and foster innovation in the country's businesses. The bank was established in November 2020.

Launching the bank, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon described the project as “one of the most significant developments in the lifetime of this parliament”.

She said at the time: “The Scottish National Investment Bank will help to tackle some of the biggest challenges we face now and in the years to come, delivering economic, social and environmental returns.”

Funding by the bank will be provided in multiple forms, including through loans and equity purchases.

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