NEWPORT could not compete with Torfaen over an offer of business grants for a worldwide engineering firm that has moved part of its business fromthe city toCwmbran.

That’s according to a written answer from the council to a councillor, which said Cintec was offered EUbacked grant funding to support its relocation.

The grant was confirmed by the firm’s managing director, who said the move from Crindau was to support the purchase of equipment.

Lib Dem councillor for St Julians Ed Townsend asked Cllr John Richards, cabinet member for regeneration, what discussions he had had with Cintec over the move.

In response, Cllr Townsend was told Torfaen is a convergence area – which means it benefits from EU funding and which Newport is not – and the firm was offered a business grant called the Local Investment Fund.

“Newport council could not compete with such grant funding,” the councillor was told.

Cintec still has a head office in Newport but moved its Newport manufacturing operation to a site around 20 per cent larger in Avondale Business Park earlier in the year.

The firm is well known for its structural repair and reinforcement work, being given the job of helping to preserve Egypt’s Step Pyramid, but has developed its Waterwall airbag technology into a system that can contain the impact of an explosion from an improvised explosive device.

It has said it hopes to increase its workforce over the months ahead in order to cope with its increasing workload.

Peter James, managing director and owner of Cintec, said the firm had asked for around £95,000 but would probably only take half of that.

He said the old site in Crindau had been four units connected together, while the new site is a single unit sized 12,000 square feet