Community Land Ownership

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 30th September 2021.

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Photo of Màiri McAllan Màiri McAllan Scottish National Party

I have just said that I will consult widely on all proposals, so I am not writing anything off at this stage. We have years in which to develop this, and I am keen to be as ambitious as possible within the auspices of the Human Rights Act 1998. I think that the member’s point about compulsory sale orders was raised in relation to community wealth building, which I suspect means that it pertains more to the portfolio of my colleague Tom Arthur.

All of that will be happening against the backdrop of ever-strengthening community ownership across Scotland. Recent statistics show that, even during the pandemic, community ownership has been on the rise, having increased by 2.5 per cent in the most recent statistical period.

As community ownership in Scotland continues to grow, so does the Government’s support. Rhoda Grant mentioned our recent commitment to doubling the Scottish land fund, from £10 million to £20 million per year, by the end of the parliamentary session. That will help us to support more communities to acquire land and assets.

I will conclude, Presiding Officer, as I am conscious of the time.

Tackling climate change fairly, supporting empowered communities to thrive in rural and urban Scotland, and continuing to redress Scotland’s historically unfair patterns of land ownership are some of the most important issues that we, in the Government, and members across the chamber face. It is up to us to deliver for the people of Scotland a fairer, greener, more equal future, and I very much look forward to working with members on that.

13:22 Meeting suspended.

14:30 On resuming—