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Enterprise zones are welcome news

January 18, 2012 5:38 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Edinburgh West MP Mike Crockart has today welcomed John Swinney's announcement of four enterprise zones across Scotland which will focus on manufacturing, life sciences and low-carbon renewable energy sectors.

Fourteen sites have been identified within the zones which should be running from April. The areas will help to stimulate private investment, create jobs and improve the economy.

Specific incentives to be offered in each site are still to be decided but they may include reduced business rates.

Commenting on the announcement Mr Crockart said:

"Today's announcement is good news for Scotland and I am pleased to see that the Scottish Government is following the coalition's example by setting up Enterprise Zones.

"In March last year the Chancellor announced that Enterprise Zones south of the border would benefit from business discount rates worth up to £275,000 as well as a radically simplified planning processes, and superfast broadband. I understand that the Scottish Government will consider similar measures and this is very welcome.

"It is of course crucial that as the details are being worked out, discussions continue with business. Enterprise Zones provide a real opportunity for key growth sectors in Scotland and with the challenging economic circumstances this is good for the economy and jobs.

"I am pleased that Edinburgh's BioQuarter is to be designated an Enterprise Zone - it's good news for Edinburgh and for Scotland's life sciences industry in general. The announcement of Leith as a low carbon and renewable area also adds additional weight to Edinburgh's case as the natural home of the Green Investment Bank."