Labour’s Sarah Owen has been on an overseas trip to forge business links between China and Hastings & Rye.
Sarah visited the high-tech areas of the Guangdong province last week and discovered how much China has in common with the industries on the south coast.
Both areas are world-leaders in High Vacuum Technology and Sarah hopes her trip will be the start of trade and technology links between the two.
I am very proud to come from Hastings because it has a lot to offer not just the UK, but the world," Sarah Owen.
Sarah, the candidate for MP in Hastings & Rye, was already very familiar with the cluster of businesses in Hastings & St Leonards that are at the cutting edge of this fast-growing industry as she spent the day with them at September’s Tec66 Conference & Exhibition.
Her visit last week to the high-tech areas of Guangdong province, in the south of China, revealed just how much the areas have in common.
Sarah said: “I am very proud to come from Hastings because it has a lot to offer not just the UK, but the world. I wanted to meet the technology giants in China to show them what our area has to offer in terms of high skilled manufacturing, such as our High Vacuum Technology businesses.
“The Tec66 business fair back in September was a huge success, showcasing the local companies on our industrial estates such as Ponswood and Castleham, which are regional and international champions in this tech industry.
“People in Hastings are crying out for high quality jobs. In an ever increasing globally competitive market, it is crucial to take Hastings’ need for jobs and growth to an international level.”
Local manufacturing company VG Scienta employs 140 people at its base on the Castleham industrial estate in St Leonards and recently celebrated its 50th anniversary.
Not only does the company manufacture Ultra High Vacuum components and custom systems to research laboratories and industrial partners around the world, but it also created to the Vacuum business cluster locally, making this area a hub from this thriving sector.
Jim Christy of Hastings Business Operations Ltd said: “Hastings and wider East Sussex is home to a cluster of world leading vacuum/photonics companies and the Tec66 initiative was launched earlier this year to both showcase our world class businesses and open up new trade and inward investment opportunities.
“Sarah Owen, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Hastings & Rye, has recently been on a trade mission to southern China to promote our technology cluster and to build relationships, with hopefully a trade delegation from China attending Tec66 in 2014.”