Growth Deals

Scotland – in the House of Commons on 16th March 2022.

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Photo of Andy Carter Andy Carter Conservative, Warrington South

What recent assessment he has made of the impact of growth deals on the Scottish economy.

Photo of John Stevenson John Stevenson Conservative, Carlisle

What recent assessment he has made of the impact of growth deals on the Scottish economy.

Photo of Iain Stewart Iain Stewart The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland

All parts of Scotland have a growth deal in implementation or negotiation, with the UK Government committing more than £1.5 billion. These agreements are stimulating local economies to build back better after the pandemic, delivering thousands of jobs across Scotland and enriching communities.

Photo of Andy Carter Andy Carter Conservative, Warrington South

I am grateful to my hon. Friend for his answer. Does he agree that growth deals are an excellent example of the UK Government and the Scottish Government working together to extend opportunities and deliver jobs right across Scotland?

Photo of Iain Stewart Iain Stewart The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland

I certainly agree with my hon. Friend that growth deals show what can be achieved when Scotland’s two Governments work together. That is what people want. They are just one part of the UK Government’s hugely ambitious levelling-up agenda, which last year saw the announcement of more than £191 million in investment projects in Scotland, supported by the levelling-up fund, the community renewal fund and the community ownership fund. In February, the levelling-up White Paper saw further good news for Scotland with the Glasgow innovation accelerator, which will create jobs and boost the regional economy. I very much hope that the Scottish Government will work with us on the levelling-up agenda, which covers a number of vital devolved areas and has the potential to transform the lives of people in Scotland.

Photo of John Stevenson John Stevenson Conservative, Carlisle

The Borderlands growth deal has been very well received on both sides of the border. It demonstrates the benefits of a close working relationship between councils, MPs and Government. Given that success, would the Minister envisage a further opportunity for a Borderlands mark 2?

Photo of Iain Stewart Iain Stewart The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland

I strongly agree with my hon. Friend that the Borderlands growth deal is a great demonstration of what can be achieved when we work together. I recently visited Innerleithen in the constituency of my right hon. Friend David Mundell and saw some of the great work that is happening there. What is really important about these growth deals is that they develop strong local partnerships that can form the basis for longer-term economic plans. My hon. Friend was a fantastic champion of the Borderlands growth deal, and I know that he will be at the forefront of developing these future plans.