The UK Nuclear Industry Association has launched a Nuclear Supply Chain Partnership (NSCP) that aims to help smaller companies get ready to bid for manufacturing work on new nuclear projects.
The initiative aims to bring together manufacturing companies who have a realistic offering to nuclear developers, reactor vendors, and top tiers of the supply chain.
"I'm delighted to launch this partnership to help open the supply chain to more companies," said Keith Parker, chief executive, Nuclear Industry Association.
"Any business working in an advanced manufacturing industry should be viable to compete for work on the UK nuclear new build programme."
The NSCP initiative will be closely aligned with the Manufacturing Advisory Service and the Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre's FitFor Nuclear programme. However NSCP will focus on providing some of the "softer skills" needed in the sector such as business plan writing, access to finance and contract information.
"The new nuclear fleet is a huge opportunity for UK-plc. This initiative will put companies in a strong position to enter the existing supply chain and compete for work worth millions of pounds," commented Neil Foreman, chair of the Nuclear Supply Chain Partnership and chairman of UK-based Centronic.
In addition to helping SMEs bid for work on the UK's proposed Hinkley Point C, Moorside and Wylfa Newydd projects, NSCP will also encourage joint ventures or partnerships with overseas companies to bring a UK percentage to a contract, NIA said.
Over 50 companies have already signed up to the NSCP scheme.