Scottish Enterprise publishes ambitious plan for growth

Economic development agency, Scottish Enterprise, today 2 May 2013, unveiled its latest business plan which aims to accelerate Scotland’s economic recovery.

The plan, which outlines an ambitious increase in targets to drive investment in innovation and capital projects, will see the agency retain its focus on helping Scottish growth companies and niche sectors to compete globally.

With recent economic statistics confirming growth in the Scottish economy for the last two consecutive quarters, the plan reinforces the need to build on signs of recovery and accelerate growth for Scotland.

During 2013/14, Scottish Enterprise will invest over £336 million – an increase of more than 10 per cent compared to last year, reflecting additional funding from the Scottish Government to deliver the Renewable Energy Investment fund.

Other key measures to be delivered in the coming year include:

  • Support up to £1.3 billion in turnover growth for account managed businesses
  • Deliver up to £350 million of additional capital investment in planned projects – an increase of 40 per cent compared to last year’s target.
  • Secure up to £150 million of additional investment from both the private and public sector in new research and development projects through assisted projects
  • Achieve up to £85 million of private sector investment for Scottish companies through the Scottish Investment Bank
  • Support up to 9000 planned Scottish jobs through foreign investment

Lena Wilson, chief executive of Scottish Enterprise said: “We want to squeeze every drop of value for Scotland’s economy from the investment we make and that means working where we can make a clear difference in terms of growth, jobs and continuing to improve the Scottish business environment.

“I am confident that this delivery plan, based on some of the strongest evidence and analyses we have had as an organisation, demonstrates how we will do just that.”

Finance Secretary John Swinney said: “The Scottish Government’s most recent State of the Economy report identified 2103 as a pivotal year for businesses in Scotland. The Scottish Government’s first priority is the economy and jobs.

“Together with our Enterprise Agencies we have worked throughout the downturn to support businesses in Scotland, investing in our infrastructure, in Scotland’s vast renewable potential and creating the most supportive business environment anywhere in the UK. Scottish Enterprise’s business plan reinforces our focus on economic opportunity and will ensure that businesses in Scotland are ready to respond as our economy returns to growth.

Key strategic priorities for the agency remain renewables, growth companies, innovation, international trade and investment and low carbon. In addition, there will be an increased focus on stimulating entrepreneurship, as well as on digital connectivity.