Scottish National Investment Bank

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 2nd December 2020.

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Photo of Fiona Hyslop Fiona Hyslop Scottish National Party

I recognise the challenges that we face in our economy; some will be shorter term and some will be medium and longer term. In relation to Scottish Enterprise, the collaboration will be important, not least because of the issues that will be faced by our retail and other companies, which we heard about in a different context in the urgent question. Short-term working capital will be provided by Scottish Enterprise, not by the bank. However, in relation to that co-operation, it is important to note the opportunity to have high-growth innovative companies. We have already announced a significant number of developments via Scottish Enterprise investments during the recovery and I am looking forward to hearing tomorrow further announcements from Scottish Enterprise with regard to helping that development.

On Murdo Fraser’s question about whether the bank will be strictly controlled by the missions, I have indicated that we will not constrain the bank but we want to contribute to the missions. The missions will not prohibit the bank from investing at commercial rates in high-growth innovative companies in different sectors other than the ones that are obvious from the missions.

On funding, the capitalisation figure of £2 billion still stands but, with regard to what was available for investment and what the bank wanted to or could invest in during this period, it was understood that £75 million would be appropriate at this point. However, if there is any further information, I can write to the member in that regard.