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Advanced manufacturing and engineering

Northern Ireland has a vibrant and highly sophisticated advanced manufacturing and engineering sector.

In recent years employment in the Northern Ireland manufacturing sector has grown more than four times faster than the rest of the UK. Manufacturing accounts for 11% of employment and over 15% of GVA, making it a key sector in the Northern Ireland economy.

The region is home to a range of indigenous and international companies, engaged in the full range of activities from R&D through new product development to manufacturing. A strong focus on R&D investment and commitment to product & process and design & development ensure the sector continues to grow and experience success.

Sector expertise

Aerospace & defence

Area of sector expertise

  • Interiors
  • Structures
  • Dynamic, rapidly growing international aerospace and defence industry founded on a strong engineering heritage and rich in knowledge, skills and experience.
  • NI is home to five companies with the SC21 Supply Chain Quality System Gold Award out of a total of nine across the UK - more than any other UK region.
  • We offer a reliable, successful and competitive supply chain with expertise in key technologies.

Discover more in our Northern Ireland Aerospace brochure

Automotive

Area of sector expertise

  • Composites
  • Plastics
  • Advanced materials
  • World leading region for the supply of tyre pressure monitoring systems.
  • Leading capability in the manufacture of complex aluminium castings.
  • Key strengths in the production of composite vehicle bodies for leading sports car brands.

Construction

Area of sector expertise

  • Construction contractors
  • Manufactured construction products
  • Construction services
  • Well-established construction sector engaged in the manufacture of value-added products and services.
  • Our companies offer expert services across a wide range of areas such as general contracting, professional services, facilities management, building envelope, interior fit-out and civil engineering.

Materials handling

Area of sector expertise

  • Mining and construction
  • Recycling
  • Handling equipment and vehicles
  • Agri-machinery
  • Supply chain
  • World-class solutions in design and manufacture of mobile bulk processing and wet processing equipment.
  • When you buy from Northern Ireland, you buy 60 years of leading the world in mobile bulk materials processing equipment.
  • We manufacture over 40% of the world’s mobile crushing and screening equipment.

Find Materials Handling companies

Electronics

Area of sector expertise

  • Semiconductors/photonics
  • Contract electronic manufacturing
  • Control panels and process automation, including materials handling
  • Telematics sensors and data analytics
  • Large internationally recognised companies, mainly OEM manufacturers, offering competitive, innovative products and services globally.
  • Smaller niche companies (many locally owned) providing a range of solutions and services externally.
  • Supplying key sectors such as Materials Handling, Food, Construction, Manufacturing, Renewables, Education, Healthcare, ICT, Automotive, Defence/Space and Transport.

Green growth and renewable energy

Area of sector expertise

  • Onshore/ offshore wind
  • Energy efficiency
  • Energy storage and intelligent systems
  • Waste and recycling
  • Water and waste water
  • Low carbon transport
  • Data centres
  • The low carbon sector employs more than 12,000 people in over 300 companies with an annual turnover in excess of £1.7bn.
  • Northern Ireland companies have the capability of providing a range of innovative products and services to address the specific needs of the various energy and water supply chains.
  • The waste sector in Northern Ireland had a turnover of £1.1bn in 2019, a GVA of £0.8bn, and 7,000 employees.

Consumer products

Area of sector expertise

  • Textiles
  • Clothing
  • Furniture
  • Giftware
  • Northern Ireland has one of the most diverse consumer goods sectors in the UK offering a wide range of design and manufacturing based companies.
  • Over 4,800 people are employed in the sector.
  • Our companies have developed manufacturing capabilities, design or technology-led products and continue to remain competitive in a global marketplace.

Access to world-class research centres of excellence

Northern Ireland is home to a number of centres of excellence undertaking industrially relevant research and channelling university expertise into the development of sophisticated products and processes to assist the growth of companies in our advanced manufacturing and engineering sector.

These include:

Northern Ireland for foreign direct investment

Northern Ireland is an attractive place for investment in the advanced manufacturing and engineering sector thanks to a combination of factors including skills availability, excellent infrastructure, cost-effectiveness and a supportive business environment. To find out more, visit our Invest in Northern Ireland section.

Please get in touch.  You can find a team in your region or fill in an enquiry form and a member of the team will contact you directly.

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