Michelin has made a deal with Scottish Ministers to “transform” their Dundee tyre factory in an effort to secure a future in low carbon transport and manufacturing.
It was announced in November the plant, which employs 845 workers, would cease production by mid-2020.
The joint commitment will see the French firm work with Scottish Enterprise, Dundee City Council and other strategic partners to help protect jobs at the site.
Focus will be on trying to secure a long-term future in manufacturing, remanufacturing, recycling and low carbon transport.
Scottish Finance Secretary Derek Mackay said: “I welcome Michelin’s formal commitment to work in partnership to develop the next phase of their presence in Scotland, including the skills and the capacity of their workforce and the transformation of the site.
“This agreement confirms our shared aim to secure a long-term future for the site and to generate significant employment there.
“The Scottish Government will continue to do everything in its power to support the repurposing of the site.”
The Michelin Dundee Action Group, comprising key public and private sector stakeholders, has met on three occasions since the closure announcement to find a sustainable future for the site and its employees.
An alliance was then formed to lead the development and delivery of a Michelin-Scotland Innovation Parc.
Membership includes Michelin, Scottish Government, UK Government, Scottish Enterprise, Dundee City Council, Skills Development Scotland, Transport Scotland, Zero Waste Scotland and the Scottish Futures Trust.
Despite the memorandum of understanding being signed on Monday, union bosses have warned “significant” job losses will still go ahead.
Marc Jackson, Unite convener at Michelin Dundee, said: “We are pleased that a number of viable proposals designed to repurpose the site are being given significant political and financial support.
“Michelin could have walked away after their announcement but the company have listened, which must be acknowledged.
“However, the reality is that a significant number of jobs will be lost.
“Unite throughout this process is determined to get the best deal for every employee on site whether it is for those who wish to leave or those who wish to find new employment on site.
“Delivering these objectives is our priority.”
Councillor John Alexander, leader of Dundee City Council, added: “We are clear that a lot of hard work lies ahead, but with the ongoing commitment of Michelin to Dundee, and the support of all the agencies involved, we have created a strong platform upon which to build a sustainable future for the site.”