Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster and Regional Development Minister Danny Kennedy have officially announced Belfast Harbour’s plans to develop a £50 million Offshore Wind Logistics Terminal, for DONG Energy.
The letter of intent, signed by the partners in February 2011, has now been finalised and construction work to develop the 450-metre quay and 50-acre logistics centre has been awarded to the Northern Ireland based company Farrans (Construction) Ltd.
The development is the first of its kind in the UK and the largest ever development in Belfast Harbour’s history.
The tailor-made facility, which is expected to create up to 150 jobs during its construction phase, will be used by DONG Energy to pre-assemble offshore wind turbines and their foundations for installation at wind farms situated in the Irish Sea.
The first project will be to service West of Duddon Sands offshore wind farm , a 50/50 joint venture between DONG Energy and ScottishPower Renewables.
“Belfast’s Harbour area is well placed to become a major centre in the rapidly expanding offshore wind sector and over the next 20 years stands to benefit from the significant business opportunities that have been identified,” said Arlene Foster.
“This investment clearly demonstrates DONG Energy’s confidence in our local capabilities and underlines Northern Ireland’s potential to become a leading player in this sector.”
DONG Energy has built five of the world’s ten largest offshore wind farms.