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Dagenham Diesel Centre part of Ford's £325m investment

PRIME Minister Tony Blair has opened Ford's new multi-million pound diesel and education centre at Dagenham.

Ford has pledged to invest £325 million in diesel engineering and manufacturing and the new factory will function alongside the existing Dagenham Engine Plant, which currently produces Ford's diesel range.

Sir Nick Scheele, president and chief operating officer at Ford Motor Company, said: 'We are writing a new chapter of our operations in Britain. We made a firm commitment to diesel engineering and manufacturing excellence at the Dagenham Estate and our investment in the new Dagenham Diesel Centre is an investment in the future.

'It is designed to be a best-in-class engineering facility for many years to come. However, the centre doesn't represent the full extent of our involvement in the regeneration of Dagenham.'

An education centre, called the Centre for Engineering and Manufacturing Excellence (CEME), will provide the training, education and development for the diesel centre alongside education for local businesses and the local community. Higher education courses will be offered including degrees and research programmes.

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