Life Sciences Investment Zone unlocks £160m

Liverpool city region’s Life Sciences Investment Zone officially launches unlocking first instalment of £160m of Government investment. Tony McDonough reports

Image of the £60m HEMISPHERE One in Paddington Village


Liverpool city region’s new Life Sciences Investment Zone offers the potential for up to £800m of public and private investment and 8,000 new jobs, it is claimed.

In the last few days the zone has been officially launched. Following the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Combined Authority and the Government, the first instalment of £160m from Whitehall has been unlocked.

This zone plan includes an initial 21 projects. Major developments are proposed at Sci-Tech Daresbury and Knowledge Quarter Liverpool, where two new buildings – HEMISPHERE One and HEMISPHERE Two – will provide additional commercial laboratory space.

Schemes are also planned for Maghull Health Park, St Helens Manufacturing and Innovation Campus and Earlsfield Park Knowsley.

Other projects will drive breakthroughs in children’s health, infection control, vaccine production, personalised medicine and long-acting therapeutics and the use of data and AI to help people lead healthier lives.

These projects are detailed in an Investment Zone Prospectus which, in collaboration with the UK Office for Investment, was unveiled to global investors at leading property event MIPIM in Cannes in March.

Combined Authority executive director investment and delivery, Dr Aileen Jones, said: “This is a landmark moment that promises to unlock huge amounts of funding and investment to drive the city region’s life sciences sector to the next level.

“It heralds a new chapter in the city region’s economy that will help drive our world-leading innovation and create thousands of good quality, well paid jobs and training opportunities.”

The Investment Zone starts just weeks after AstraZeneca announced a £450m investment in its Speke vaccine facility, which is part of one of Europe’s largest biomanufacturing clusters.

Together with neighbouring Cheshire and Warrington, the city region already delivers £2bn of infectious disease research and development each year – the biggest concentration in the UK and one of the largest in Europe.

iiCON (Infection Innovation Consortium), led by Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, and the Pandemic Institute are set to expand their pioneering R&D through the Investment Zone programme.

Liverpool city region also has the UK’s largest concentration of specialist hospitals outside London and with more than 7,000 volunteers, is a leader in clinical trials.


The AstraZeneca facility in Speke will see a £450m investment


Three Investment Zone tax sites at Maghull Health Park, St Helens Manufacturing and Innovation Campus and Sci-Tech Daresbury will offer financial benefits to expanding or relocating businesses.

Halton and St Helens borough councils will be able to retain business rates on new properties to help pay for further developments.

Investment Zone projects will provide business and innovation support, with KQ Liverpool and Inovus running new skills and talent programmes for local people.

The Investment Zone plans were developed in collaboration with the city region’s life sciences sector, with the University of Liverpool playing a major role. They will be overseen by the newly established Health and Life Sciences Cluster Board.

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