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Greenville Business Magazine

The Business Narrative: UK Agreement

Dec 08, 2022 09:12AM ● By David Dykes

Gov. McMaster Signs MOU with United Kingdom to Bolster Economic Development

Gov. Henry McMaster on Wednesday Dec. 7, 2022, joined United Kingdom Trade Minister Greg Hands to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between South Carolina and the United Kingdom to strengthen cooperation and trade relations between the two. 

"With economic development records being broken seemingly every year, South Carolina is entering an era of economic prosperity never before seen in state history," said McMaster.

"Through this partnership with the United Kingdom, we further our momentum and provide South Carolina and our businesses with a competitive advantage over other states when competing for economic development and trade with the United Kingdom." 

The governor’s office said this is an effort to build upon South Carolina's already booming economy.

Since taking office, McMaster has announced over 69,000 new jobs and over $22.5 billion in new capital investment. This calendar year alone, the governor has announced over 10,000 new jobs and over $5.5 billion in new investment. 

The agreement prioritizes research and development opportunities within the automotive and life sciences sectors.

Both sectors have been a top priority of McMaster. In April of 2021, he issued an executive order aimed at onshoring additional life sciences companies in South Carolina, and in October of 2022, he issued a similar executive order to focus the state's recruitment efforts on electric vehicle-related businesses. 

"I am picking up the baton on our ambitious state-level programme from my predecessor who visited South Carolina exactly one year ago to kick off these discussions," Hands said in a statement.

“I’m here to build on these deep relations and strengthen our trade partnership for the future. The MOU I’m signing with Governor McMaster will help us work even more closely together to tackle trade barriers, attract capital investment, and deliver cutting-edge research and development.”       

According to the Department of Commerce, the United Kingdom is South Carolina’s 6th largest import partner and 8th largest export partner.

From the beginning of 2022 to September 2022, South Carolina imported goods worth almost $1.2 billion from the United Kingdom.

For the same period, South Carolina has exported goods worth almost $1 billion to the United Kingdom. South Carolina is home to about 60 British companies that employ approximately 6,500 South Carolinians.

South Carolina is the third state to sign an MOU with the United Kingdom, joining Indiana and North Carolina.

A copy of the MOU can be found here

STIWA US, Inc. To Expand, Relocate New North American Headquarters In York County

STIWA US, Inc., a company of the STIWA Group, announced plans to expand and relocate its new North American headquarters in York County.

The company’s $30 million investment will create 48 jobs over the next five years, according to the South Carolina Department of Commerce.

Headquartered in Austria, STIWA US, Inc. is an advanced automation company, specializing in high performance automation with a focus on individual customer and product requirements.

The company’s expertise in serving the automotive, fittings and medical markets contributed to its growth over the last 50 years, Commerce officials said.

Relocating its headquarters, to include manufacturing operations, from Fort Mill to Rock Hill at Porter and Long Meadow roads, STIWA US, Inc.’s expansion includes a new facility which will serve as the company’s new North American headquarters.

From this location, the company will be able to readily engage with U.S.-based companies on their specific needs, including new mobility and electrical equipment markets, Commerce officials said.

The relocation is expected to be complete by September 2024. Those interested in joining STIWA US, Inc. should go to the company’s careers page.

The state’s Coordinating Council for Economic Development approved job development credits related to the project.

The council also awarded a $250,000 Set-Aside grant to York County to assist with site preparation and building construction.

USPTO China IP Road Show coming December 15

9am - 4:30pm

Greenville Technical College (Barton Campus) Student Success Center

506 Pleasantburg Dr., Greenville, SC

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s China Intellectual Property (IP) Road Show comes to Greenville, South Carolina, with a free one-day program bringing together experts from the U.S. government, academics, IP attorneys, and local business people to share insights on China and IP issues that will benefit U.S. IP rights holders. Join us to hear from these experts about how to protect and enforce your IP rights in China and the United States. To register CLICK HERE.


Environmental Groups, Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island Awarded $1.2 Million to Establish Living Shorelines

The long-term resilience of Beaufort County’s military installations got a boost with the announcement of a major grant to reduce climate impacts at Parris Island and surrounding communities.

The Coastal Conservation League, South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR), Sustainability Institute (SI), Marine Corps Recruit Depot (MCRD) Parris Island, and The Pew Charitable Trusts were awarded nearly $1.2 million to establish living shorelines near MCRD Parris Island to improve the area’s natural infrastructure.

Unfolding over four years, the project will employ a diverse group of volunteers in oyster reef construction.

The completed project will have a total restored footprint of approximately 3.1 acres, which will ultimately protect about 390 acres. The grant was awarded through the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s National Coastal Resilience Fund.

Living shorelines are an increasingly popular strategy for addressing erosion by stabilizing shorelines with natural materials. In South Carolina, that often means using two of the most dominant features of the estuarine environment: oyster reefs and salt marsh grasses.

SCDNR biologists have been constructing living shorelines using recycled oyster shells for two decades and, more recently, planting Spartina grass to restore salt marsh.

The restored habitat reduces storm surge impact, absorbs floodwaters, dissipates wind and wave energy, improves water quality, and provides habitat for birds, fish, and other wildlife.

The project at Parris Island will rely heavily on volunteers to build the living shorelines and will use a “train the trainer” model to further expand the project’s impact.

The project sites were identified through stakeholder collaboration and are located along significant waterways in Beaufort County on the Beaufort River (Intracoastal Waterway), Battery Creek, and Archers Creek.

Access to MCRD, Parris Island is only available via a causeway, US Highway 21, that is extremely vulnerable to flooding.

Similarly, the surrounding community—including infrastructure and community resources like Beaufort Naval Hospital and Fort Frederick Cultural Reserve—is threatened by flooding events.

Duke Energy's Chief Operating Officer To Retire In 2023

Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK) said Dhiaa Jamil, executive vice president and chief operating officer, will retire midyear 2023 after a career spanning more than 41 years at the company.

"Dhiaa is an exceptional leader and a trusted advisor who will leave behind a powerful legacy of safety and operational excellence at Duke Energy," said Lynn Good, chair, president and CEO. 

As chief operating officer, Jamil is responsible for the company's generation fleet, transmission grid, major project management and construction, environment, health and safety, and other related support functions.

Previously, he was president of regulated generation and chief nuclear officer, where he was responsible for the largest regulated nuclear fleet in the country.

Earlier in his career, he held various leadership roles at the Oconee, McGuire and Catawba nuclear stations, including station manager and site vice president.

Jamil's service extends into the energy industry and the community. He serves on the board of directors for the Nuclear Energy Institute and chairs the University of North Carolina Charlotte Energy Production Infrastructure Center (EPIC) Advisory Board.

His leadership for education contributed to the development of EPIC, which has benefited the university and the Greater Charlotte region through research and the creation of a pipeline of trained engineers.

Jamil will remain chief operating officer until his retirement.

To transition Jamil's other responsibilities, effective Jan. 1, 2023:

*Preston Gillespie will join the Senior Management Committee (SMC) as executive vice president, chief generation officer and enterprise operational excellence, with expanded responsibilities that include enterprise operational excellence, environmental, health and safety and coal combustion products. He will report to Good.

As chief generation officer, Gillespie works across the enterprise to integrate and advance Duke Energy's generation strategy to support the company's clean energy transition.

During his 36 years with the company, he has held a variety of engineering and operations roles across generation, including operations shift manager, plant manager, site vice president and chief nuclear officer.

*Harry Sideris, executive vice president, Customer Experience, Solutions and Services, will assume responsibility for the transmission organization in addition to his current duties.

Modernizing the grid is key to delivering a clean, reliable and affordable energy future to customers, and consolidating distribution and transmission assets under the same organization will advance this effort, Duke Energy officials said.

Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), a Fortune 150 company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., is one of America's largest energy holding companies.

Its electric utilities serve 8.2 million customers in North Carolina, South  Carolina, Florida, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky, and collectively own 50,000 megawatts of energy capacity.

Its natural gas unit serves 1.6 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Ohio and Kentucky. The company employs 28,000 people.

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