Scots roll out 80-project economic recovery plan

Aaron Morby 12 years ago
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The Scottish Government will unveil a £60bn programme of 80 construction projects to boost the economy north of the border this week.

Infrastructure Secretary Alex Neil is to outline a series of 50 specific projects and 30 infrastructure programmes across Scotland.

Work on the £3bn project for an A96 dual carriageway will be confirmed for a start in 2016, as well as the dualling of the A9 from Perth to Inverness by 2025.

The package will also include new schools and housing projects to deliver growth and jobs.

Neil said: “This week I will publish a plan to invest billions in more than 80 major capital projects and programmes that will keep Scotland’s economy moving.

“They are all significant developments that will both boost growth, and deliver a lasting legacy that benefits generations to come.

“It will also provide crucial support for employment, with every additional £100m of capital we invest per year estimated to generate £160m of economic activity and support 1400 jobs in the wider economy for that year.

“All of these projects will signal a clear intent and provide the kind of solid foundations and certainty our construction industry demands.

He added: “With the Westminster cuts in our capital budget, and the Autumn statement providing far too little, far too late, our plan will have maximum value for taxpayers’ money at its heart.”

Neil also re-stated the SNP’s call for the UK government to devolve significant, new borrowing powers to Scotland.

“The investment plan is ambitious, and rightly so. It could go even further, if the UK Government would go beyond the current insufficient Scotland Bill proposals on borrowing.”

Holyrood ministers have said money they get from Westminster, which funds the Scottish budget, is shrinking by £3.3bn – or 11% below the 2010-11 level – over three years.

The capital budget, which pays for infrastructure projects such as roads and schools, is dropping by 36%.

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