The Celtic Freeport welcomes its first permanent Chief Executive, Luciana Ciubotariu, to take this vital re-industrialisation, decarbonisation and regeneration project to fruition.  She will assume her post from May 2024.

Luciana brings a wealth of experience to this role, having been part of the senior management team of the Thames Freeport.  Following a career in the senior trade roles, latterly for the UK Government, her experience in driving growth at the Thames Freeport, coupled with strategic insight gained from a career focused on trade and government affairs, positions her uniquely to steer the Celtic Freeport.

Alongside this significant leadership appointment, the Celtic Freeport has completed the first major part of its development journey, with the submission of the outline business case to the Welsh and UK Governments.  To mark this move from bid to development and, eventually, operational phase, the Freeport has overhauled its digital presence, with a new website and social media channels (LinkedIn, X and YouTube).

The Celtic Freeport is a public-private consortium whose partners include Associated British Ports (ABP), Neath Port Talbot Council, Pembrokeshire County Council and the Port of Milford Haven, alongside renewables developers, energy companies, industrial complexes, innovation assets, academic institutions and education providers.  The Celtic Freeport covers the ports of Milford Haven and Port Talbot and spans clean energy developments and innovation assets, fuel terminals, a power station, heavy engineering and the steel industry across South-West Wales.

I am hugely excited to lead such as strong and purposeful partnership and I am looking forward to start soon and to collaborate with the wider community in achieving our ambitions for South Wales,” commented Luciana Ciubotariu, Chief Executive of Celtic Freeport.

She added: “The Celtic Freeport will play a pivotal role in the future of the green economy.  I look forward to building further momentum behind the creation of a green investment corridor across South-West Wales.  This is an exciting project that will accelerate supply chain innovation and encourage significant investment in port infrastructure, alternative fuel plants, renewable energy bases and factories, while fast-tracking skills development for new green industries and national decarbonisation.”

The Celtic Freeport is an outstanding proposition and now we have the start of an outstanding team to lead us into our next phase,” said Roger Maggs MBE, Chair of Celtic Freeport.


Notes to editor

  • Luciana Ciubotariu has over 20 years’ of experience in foreign direct investment, strategic consulting and business development. In her previous role, Luciana acted as the Head of Trade and Investment for Thames Freeport.  She has also worked for the UK’s Department for Business and Trade leading over £5 billion in FDI, which generated over 10,000 jobs across the country. 

Luciana also held roles in private sector in companies such as The Boston Consulting Group, Unilever and ABN AMRO.  She is passionate about the role investment plays in unlocking regeneration and community-based economic growth.  

She is Brazilian and moved to the UK in 2020.  Luciana is looking forward to starting her new role as CEO of the Celtic Freeport in May 2024.

  • In September 2022, the Welsh and UK Governments invited proposals for a freeport in Wales. The closing date for bids was 24 November 2022, with the shortlisted bids announced on 22 March 2023.  The consortium is preparing a business case and establishing robust governance arrangements, alongside the necessary corporate and legal structures, to allow for the formal designation of the freeport by the Welsh and UK Governments in 2024.
  • The Celtic Freeport:
  • Land – Nearly 600 hectares connected to two deep-water ports, at the heart of Wales’ industrial landscape, primed by an investment incentives package.
  • Connectivity – Wales’ best-connected industrial zone offering strong connectivity, from rail, road and sea to transmission and fuel pipelines.
  • Skills and innovation – A substantial local legacy fund providing opportunities to upskill and re-skill the existing workforce as well as training for young people, alongside an innovation network bringing together academics, businesses and centres of excellence.