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Fri October 30 2020

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Scotland sets out £24bn infrastructure plan

25 Sep The Scottish government has published the draft of a £24bn Infrastructure Investment Plan (IIP) that is expected to create tens of thousands of jobs.

The plan, which covers the five years from 2021-22 to 2025-26, is intended to help stimulate Scotland’s ‘green’ economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

It includes investment to decarbonise business, industry and buildings, the provision of new health facilities and schools and support for manufacturing innovation.

The plan also places a new emphasis on enhancing and finding new uses for existing infrastructure before embarking on new projects.

The draft IIP was unveiled in a statement to the Scottish Parliament by infrastructure secretary Michael Matheson. He said: “The draft IIP provides a robust pipeline of work that will help stimulate a green recovery and offer high quality, sustainable jobs in all parts of Scotland.”

The plan includes:

more than £8bn for environmental sustainability and the transition to net zero emissions, including £250m to support 18,000 hectares of forestry and restoring peatlands;

almost £5bn boosting inclusive economic growth, including £500m to extend full fibre broadband to businesses and households in rural areas and £30m for the National Islands Plan;

more than £11bn for cities, towns, villages and rural areas, including £275m to revitalise town centres and nearly £2bn on health infrastructure and equipment.

The intention is to add further projects will be added to the draft IIP when their procurement plans are sufficiently advanced. The Scottish government said that it may also be possible to bring more schemes forward after the UK government publishes it comprehensive spending review, which will clarify the Scottish government’s budget for future capital investment.

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