Driving inclusive economic growth through partnership and collaboration between government, agencies, academia and the private sector

An aerial photograph of the Forth Bridges

Key points:

  • Supporting development of Regional Economic Partnerships across Scotland out of the City Region and Growth Deal experience
  • Delivery of a new enterprise agency for the South of Scotland
  • Strengthening procurement collaborations to improve community wealth building

Through our work with local authorities on City Region and Growth Deals we have seen the value of partners using catalyst investment to collaborate to develop and share their passion and ambition to drive inclusive growth. To capitalise on this activity and to ensure that our collective public and private investment in infrastructure, jobs, housing and skills creates places that offer wealth, health and opportunity to all those who live there. We are supporting the development of Regional Economic Partnerships.

Regional economic partnerships such as the Glasgow City Regional Partnership are already active across much of Scotland. We will continue to support emerging partnerships, encouraging them to be ambitious for the future success of their region. Working with those regional partners, the agencies will also ensure that our collective public and private investment in infrastructure, jobs, housing and skills creates places that offer wealth, health and opportunity to all those who live there. In parallel, we will task the agencies to build on existing work to develop a National Asset Register of sectors, skills and capabilities that is geographically focussed.

To achieve sustainable and inclusive economic growth in rural areas work is underway to establish the new South of Scotland Enterprise Agency by 1 April 2020. We are investing £13.3m this year to set up the agency and support projects across the region. In advance of this coming into effect we have established an interim Economic Partnership, backed with £10 million of investment.

We will establish the Convention of the South of Scotland to drive collaboration and inclusive, sustainable development.

In order to support community wealth building we will support the Glasgow procurement collaboration to further develop their work to increase the retention of local spending within the area. This will involve working with local businesses to ensure they are able to access contracts and supply goods and services, retaining expenditure investment and jobs within local communities.

Our Programme for Government lays down an ambitious roadmap for the Scottish economy and this year we will test a new place-based approach to integrated business support for micro-enterprises operating in rural areas, recognising the different challenges they face such as access to markets, connectivity issues and employment patterns. This new approach will deliver flexible support that is tailored to the needs of the business and its geographical location.

Key resources:

Inclusive Growth

South of Scotland Economic Partnership

Scottish Government: South of Scotland Economic Agency Consultation Report