London, Aug 28, IRNA - The Scottish government Tuesday welcomed plans announced by an Iranian textile company to set up operations in southern Scotland and create up to 60 jobs.
"Jahan Cashmere's plan to create up to 60 new jobs in Kelso is terrific news for the Scottish Borders economy," Finance Secretary John Swinney said.
Swinney said that the decision shows the "high regard in which the skills and expertise of the Borders workforce are held in the international textile industry.
"Creating new skilled jobs such as those at Jahan Cashmere will help deliver this government's aim of increased sustainable, economic growth," he said.
The family-owned company, which specializes in dehairing Iranian and Afghan cashmere, is opening a factory later this year, employing 20 people initially but hoping to treble the number over the next few years.
According to the Glasgow Herald, the move to Kelso is also being backed by a Pnds 500,000 (Dlrs 1 billion) grant from the Scottish Executive's regional selective assistance while the factory has been leased by local Scottish Borders Council (SBC).
David Gass, senior director of operations at Scottish Enterprise Borders, said it was "hugely encouraging" to see an international company coming to the area.
"Despite some recent redundancies, the local textiles industry is still a major employer in the region and Jahan Cashmere will play an important role in providing cashmere for the Scottish textile industry," Gass said.
SBC deputy leader Alex Nicol said that his council was "delighted to see a new inward investment company moving to the Borders and providing valuable new job opportunities for Kelso and the surrounding area."
Jahan Cashmere said it targeted the area because of the available skilled workforce due to the thousands of redundancies in the Borders textile trade during the past decade.
"The skills and experience of the labour force within the Borders cannot be bettered anywhere in the UK," company spokesman Hadi Jahanian said.
"Given the Borders historic links to the cashmere industry, it seemed like a natural place for us to establish our UK presence," he was quoted saying by the Herald.
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