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NEWS | MARCH 2016

Election Focus Chamber launches Holyrood manifesto AFFORDABLE housing and retaining a skilled workforce are top of North-east business’s agenda for the new Holyrood parliament. These were revealed in the Chamber’s Scottish Parliament Election Manifesto which sets out what North-east businesses want from the next Scottish government. The manifesto was developed in consultation with Chamber members ahead of the Holyrood elections on May 5, and details the support needed from the next Scottish government to drive growth in the region. Specific requests in the manifesto include focusing on affordable housing for key workers, retaining a skilled workforce in a challenging business environment and supporting international growth. The Chamber has identified six key areas for action: • housing • connectivity • a competitive fiscal environment The manifesto can be read on our website at www.agcc.co.uk/politicalinfluence/scottish-election-2016

• developing the workforce • internationalisation • devolution Copies of the manifesto will be distributed to all candidates in the North-east as well as party leaders and their likely cabinet members.

We asked all four leaders of Scotland’s main political parties what they thought of our manifesto. Here is what they said… Nicola Sturgeon MSP, SNP leader The SNP Government has consistently demonstrated our commitment to the North-east’s economy. The AWPR is the centre piece of £1billion of infrastructure spending for the area invested over the last parliament. Having listened to business and industry, we’ve also confirmed a further £379million in new funding, going beyond the City Deal, to cut journey times by road and rail, to support digital connectivity and to invest in innovation in our oil and gas industry. One of the key planks of our agenda for a third term in government will be our ambitious plans on housing. We have exceeded our target of building 30,000 affordable homes, and we intend to go even further over the next five years with bold plans to build an additional 50,000 homes. 40

To help the North-east meet the housing challenge, we’ve provided certainty over investment for the whole of the next parliament. We’re also determined to support those affected by the downturn in the oil industry with a £12million fund to support skills, and a further £12.5million to help business to innovate and internationalise. But we know that there is more to be done to help the North-east meet its full potential – and a re-elected SNP Government will build on our record in supporting businesses and keep the region moving forward, that’s why we are reviewing planning and will be launching a review of business rates. And the SNP will always do everything in our power to foster a culture of innovation, investment and enterprise across the North-east – ensuring the region continues to be an exceptionally attractive place to do business and create jobs.

Profile for AGCC

March Business Bulletin  

In the March Business Bulletin we focus on global markets. The Business Bulletin is Aberdeen & Grampian Chamber of Commerce's monthly magazi...

March Business Bulletin  

In the March Business Bulletin we focus on global markets. The Business Bulletin is Aberdeen & Grampian Chamber of Commerce's monthly magazi...