R&D investment

Ross-shire Engineering eyes 500 jobs in expansion

Richard Lochhead
Richard Lochhead: green revolution (pic: Terry Murden)

A research and development project could treble a Highland firm’s turnover and create up to 500 jobs.

Ross-shire Engineering is investing to further its ambition for the region to be a centre of excellence for sustainable water treatment technology. It is backed by a £2.8m package of support from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE).

With its main operations in Muir of Ord and offices in Inverness, RSE already has an 800-strong workforce in Scotland.

The HIE funding will contribute to the costs of establishing the company’s dedicated R&D hub to research, design and develop innovative water treatment solutions for world-wide commercialisation.

Over the next three years, RSE plans to create up to 300 jobs in manufacturing and delivery, and a further 200 engineering, technical and project roles. The new jobs will include senior posts, apprenticeships and graduate positions.

About £1.1m of the HIE funding is being awarded through the Green Jobs Fund as it will increase water quality, cut carbon, reduce waste and improve the use of natural resources.

Allan Dallas, RSE’s water technologies director, said: “Engineering talent based in the Highlands are already leading a revolution in the way that water companies build treatment plants across the UK.

“Future engagement with HIE, and The University of The Highlands and Islands and stakeholders is a key strategic move to ensure that RSE continues to push the boundaries of technology and move into international markets.

“In Scotland alone we recruited 70 apprentices and graduates last year, mostly in the Highlands. Our hope is for current and future talent to be inspired by our approach and join RSE at this exciting time.”

James Gibbs, HIE area manager for the Inner Moray Firth area, said: “The project will enable RSE to better meet the demands of both the UK and overseas markets, while strengthening its already valuable presence in the Highlands.

“Significantly, it will safeguard employment and create new well-paid local jobs in an industry that aims for greater environmental sustainability, as well as improving RSE’s business performance from the capital investment.”

The Green Jobs Fund supports businesses and social enterprises to create and retain jobs that produce goods or services that benefit the environment or conserve natural resources, as well as jobs that drive more environmentally friendly processes in organisations across the region.

Minister for Just Transition, Employment and Fair Work Richard Lochhead said: “To secure a truly just transition we must invest in our green industries now – creating and supporting the green jobs that will be vital in helping Scotland to become a net zero nation.

“In doing so, Scotland’s businesses have the opportunity to be at the forefront of this new green revolution.

“The Green Jobs Fund of up to £100m is an integral part of that – helping to addresses the skills needs, challenges and opportunities in supporting a just transition to net zero.”

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