Page last updated at 00:27 GMT, Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Deal 'will save turbine factory'

Generic wind turbines
The deal was struck after months of negotiations

A deal has been struck which will save almost 100 jobs at the Vestas wind turbine factory in Kintyre, BBC Scotland understands.

Danish company Skycon has agreed to take over the plant at Machrihanish, near Campbeltown.

It will be given government financial assistance to adapt the factory for larger scale production needed to meet Scotland's renewable energy targets.

Vestas revealed in August that it was in financial difficulty.

The factory employs 92 people and is a cornerstone of the local economy.

Negotiations began soon after Vestas management announced they were to close the plant.

In December it was confirmed that Welcon - which is a subsidiary of the Danish Skycon group - was in talks to buy the plant as a going concern.

It is now understood that a deal has been finalised that will see it take over the factory.

First Minister Alex Salmond is due to join other guests at the factory on Thursday afternoon, when the official announcement is expected to be made.

Sources also believe the deal will include the firm being given government financial assistance to expand the plant so it can make much larger wind towers to help speed up Scotland's move towards more renewable energy production.

It is claimed this could ultimately lead to up to 400 workers being employed at the site.

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