Nicola Sturgeon opens £70m expansion at pharmaceutical plant in Irvine

The First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon will appear alongside Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Image: Lisa Ferguson
The First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon will appear alongside Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Image: Lisa Ferguson
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First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has opened a £70 million expansion at an antibiotics factory.

Pharmaceutical giant GSK will now be able to make antibiotics for an extra 100 million patients each year at the plant in Irvine, North Ayrshire.

The site has been expanded to meet the growing demand from the developing world and emerging markets with help from a £1.5 million Scottish Government grant.

The investment creates 55 new jobs and provides a 35 per cent boost in capacity. The expansion is part of GSK’s £280 million investment in Scotland since 2013 between its sites in Irvine and Montrose, Angus.

A further £200 million of investment funding was announced at the opening on Monday.

Ms Sturgeon said: “GSK is hugely important to the Scottish economy and also hugely important to the economy in this part of Scotland.

“Life sciences is important in Scotland and as we’re seeing demonstrated here today, one which is a world leader.

“What we manufacture here in Scotland is the most-used drug in India, that’s a huge achievement.

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“I’m delighted that the Scottish Government, in the form of Scottish Enterprise, has been able to assist with the expansion of this plant.”

GSK chief executive officer Sir Andrew Witty said: “We’re delighted to be opening a new facility in Scotland, where we have a long-standing commitment to manufacturing.

“This secures the long-term future of the site. The product that we produce here is exported to 140 countries.

“The impact of this new facility will be felt here and abroad, with more antibiotics being produced for people in countries where this sort of medicine is desperately needed.”

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