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16 December 2011

Funding Boost For Banffshire Economy

The local economy has been given a boost with £837,000 of European funding.

Finance Secretary John Swinney confirmed the news on a visit to the area where he also welcomed the creation of 50 new jobs by the international IT services company Atos.

The money from the European Structural Funds will support 79 enterprises and create 108 jobs. It will allow for the development of new business space for start-up companies in renewables and the creative industries as well as provide training opportunities in the renewables sector.

The project is a partnership between The Moray Council, Highlands & Islands Enterprise and the Moray College UHI.

Commenting, Banffshire & Buchan Coast MSP Stewart Stevenson said:

“This is good news for Buckie, and the wider Banffshire economy.

“These are important local projects which are being supported and I look forward to local people getting the training benefits and employment opportunities which this funding award will create.”


Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Employment and Sustainable Growth John Swinney said:

"This funding is welcome news for the Moray area and will help grow the local economy, through new jobs and training opportunities.

"The Scottish Government is committed to building sustainable economic growth and we have worked closely with the Moray Economic Partnership since it was established to mitigate the impacts of the UK Government's Strategic Defence and Security Review.

"We will continue to support their work to maximise the opportunities that have arisen since the changes at RAF Kinloss and Lossiemouth."


Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure and Capital Investment Alex Neil said:

"These projects will create jobs in Moray, helping local people gain new skills and will grow the economy locally and in Scotland as a whole.

"By supporting local initiatives, these funding awards will benefit the communities where they are based and strengthen business development over the coming years, as well as bringing much needed employment to the area."


Background

The schemes that received European funding are:
  1. Buckie Renewables Scheme: To refurbish a harbour building in Buckie to provide business space for SMEs in the offshore renewables industry.
  2. Training for Buckie Renewables: To refurbish a 2nd building in Buckie for the renewables sector with half of the building to be used by Moray College to provide training to SMEs in renewables, and the remaining half to provide further business space for renewables SMEs.
  3. Moray Business Sites: To develop business sites through Moray – to provide site servicing at sites in Elgin, Keith, Buckie and Lhanbryde and to refurbish existing business units in Lossiemouth.
  4. Moray Learning Centres (Buckie): This is a partnership scheme between The Moray Council and Moray College. It will refurbish a property in Buckie and will assist people in accessing further education, training and into employment.
  5. Grant Lodge Creative Industries: The Moray Council will refurbish a historic building in central Elgin, part of which will provide business units to attract creative industry SMEs. The remainder of the building will accommodate a visitor information centre, the registrars and a heritage centre.
  6. Green Transport: This council-led scheme will implement the findings of the Active Travel Audits in the towns of Keith and Buckie. This will improve green transport links in and between Moray's biggest towns.
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