I am delighted to have secured this Adjournment debate on the Stirling and Clackmannanshire city region deal. I am proud, too, that this Conservative and Unionist Government have made it possible for every single one of Scotland’s cities to have a city deal, adding up to billions of pounds of public investment unlocking many billions more in private investment. It is a Government record that all Scottish Conservatives can and should be proud of, and one that will bear fruit for Scotland’s economy and Scotland’s people well into the future. City deals drive investment in infrastructure. A city deal sends a strong signal from the Government that they have confidence in the future of the city and the region and that they are prepared to commit public funds to make that future a reality. City deals are designed with the intention of transforming the local economy and creating a landscape in which individuals, communities and businesses are enabled to explore their full potential.
The genesis of the Stirling city deal was the realisation that Stirling’s economy had several structural weaknesses that needed to be addressed. First, while Stirling is the best place in Scotland for people to set up and start a business, and the best place in Scotland for a large established business to continue its journey—