Liverpool Life Sciences Zone sparks £800m investment

Knowledge Quarter Liverpool

Liverpool City Region Life Sciences Investment Zone has officially launched in a move that could pave the way for up to £800 million of public and private investment and 8,000 new jobs.

It follows the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Liverpool City Region Combined Authority and the UK government’s “Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities” to unlock the first instalment of the government’s £160 million contribution.

The city region said its ambitious Investment Zone plan includes an initial 21 projects designed to “supercharge” the economy by creating new hi-tech facilities, providing business and innovation support and training the next generation of talent.

Major developments are proposed at Sci-Tech Daresbury and Knowledge Quarter Liverpool, where two new buildings will provide additional commercial laboratory space to boost the city region’s infection innovation capabilities.

“Major schemes are also planned for Maghull Health Park, St Helens Manufacturing and Innovation Campus and Earlsfield Park Knowsley, while 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,” said Liverpool City Region.

“The projects are detailed in an Investment Zone Prospectus which, in collaboration with the UK Office for Investment, was unveiled to global investors at real estate event MIPIM in March and cited as a major international opportunity for the UK to grow its life sciences sector.”

Liverpool City Region 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 commences operation just weeks after AstraZeneca announced a £450 million investment in its Speke vaccine facility, which is part of one of Europe’s largest biomanufacturing clusters.

Liverpool City Region added: “Together with neighbouring Cheshire and Warrington, the city region already delivers £2 billion of infectious disease research and development each year – the biggest concentration in the UK and one of the largest in Europe – with iiCON (Infection Innovation Consortium), led by Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, and the Pandemic Institute set to expand their pioneering R&D through the Investment Zone programme.

“The 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.

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

“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.”