£4m grant awarded to Pensana for Saltend rare earth separation site

A grant of up to £4 million has been offered by the government to support the build out of Pensana’s rare earth separation plant at Saltend.

Chairman Paul Atherley has confirmed the award, part of the Automotive Transformation Fund. It comes after London Metals Week saw the project classed as a strategically important development in Westminster, while being highlighted during Mineral Security Partnership talks between UK and US.

The site forms part of the Humber Freeport, and would welcome shipments from mines being established in Angola by the company.

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Announcing the offer to the City, chair Paul Atherley said: “The successful development of the US$250 million Saltend project would be an important step in supporting the UK automotive supply chain, which employs over 780,000 people, as it transitions to electric vehicles.

“By 2030 the UK is expected to have transitioned from being a major European producer of internal combustion engines to be a world leader in the manufacture of electric drive units, producing three million EDUs annually, with a large proportion destined for export. Without a secure magnet metal supply chain this is under threat.”

Pensana chair Paul Atherley with Business and Trade Minister Nusrat Ghani.
Pensana chair Paul Atherley with Business and Trade Minister Nusrat Ghani earlier this month.

The offer is subject to clearance from the relevant authority monitoring state subsidies and a funding, activities and deliverables plan. It is expected to be provided in the coming weeks.

The Saltend project will deliver 450 jobs during construction and 150 high value jobs in operation, with a significant opportunity for further expansion. Groundworks began last summer, with fundraising for the total build continuing.

Shares in the London Stock Exchange-listed firm were up 8.3 per cent to 26p in the first two hours of trading folowing the announcement.

Original artice – https://business-live.co.uk/all-about/yorkshire-humber

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