Rural Growth Deal for Argyll and Bute?

Published Date: 

18 May 2018 - 10:25

Public, private and voluntary sector organisations are coming together to back transformational investment in Argyll and Bute from the UK and Scottish Governments.

Argyll and Bute Council is leading a bid for a rural growth deal that would see the area benefit from the kind of support received by regions across Scotland through city deals.

If the overall approach for the deal is agreed at next week’s Policy and Resources Committee, members of the public will be invited to get involved in bringing investment to Argyll and Bute through consultation.

Leader of Argyll and Bute Council, Councillor Aileen Morton, said:

“We want people and businesses to thrive in Argyll and Bute.

We are developing proposals for UK and Scottish Government investment in our area as part of a rural growth deal.

Argyll and Bute has been recognised as one of Scotland’s most promising regions. Our landscape and natural resources bring huge opportunities for economic growth.

To turn opportunity into action though we need more people. Population forecasts estimate that by 2027 will need another 10,000 working-age people to keep our businesses open, deliver public services, teach our children, look after our older residents.

Delivering a prosperous future that retains and attracts the people we need demands more support than the Council alone can give.

Therefore, along with our partners and the private sector, we are developing proposals for discussion with the Scottish and UK Governments.”

A report going to the Policy and Resources Committee sets out that to secure funding, a deal would have to be focused, not on ‘business as usual’ requirements, but on delivering innovative and inclusive economic growth for Argyll and Bute.

The report includes proposals for key growth sectors and project themes on which to base discussions. These range from innovation and tourism to transport, accommodation and digital connectivity.

Councillor Morton said:

“A successful deal will be about bringing together our priorities for Argyll and Bute with the Scottish and UK Governments’ aims. We are ambitious for our area, and need to secure investment that will deliver significant benefit for our local and wider economy.”