Vestas Wind Systems A/S, the world’s largest wind turbine manufacturer, is to cut another 2,000 jobs worldwide. They cite reasons as being caused by falling prices, uncertainties around renewable energy subsidies and increasing competition, particularly from Chinese manufacturers. Vestas has already closed a manufacturing plant on the Isle of White, where an R&D facility remains and pulled out of plans for a major manufacturing plant at Sheerness which had been proposed to supply turbines for the UK’s Round 3 offshore wind programme. Worldwide, Vestas will have reduced its workforce by 7,000 to 16,000 by the end of 2013.
It is not yet clear whether there will be any further redundancies in the UK. Vestas appears to be responding, in particular to a potential reduction in the US production tax credit for wind power. However, the proposed changes to the UK system for supporting renewables from an obligation/tradable certificate system to Feed in Tariffs has also been blamed for causing an “investment hiatus” by Scottish and Southern Energy’s Keith MacLean.
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