The funding was announced by the UK’s Deputy Prime Minister David Lidington and Further and Higher Education Minister Richard Lochhead, during a visit to Moray College.
The Scottish Government will invest up to £32.5 million in Moray over 10 to 15 years to drive inclusive economic growth across the region, with the UK Government matching the funding over a 15 year period
The investment will fund targeted economic development activity across a range of themes, including infrastructure, transport, tourism, energy and skills.
Moray’s Growth Deal bid was launched in 2017, following extensive consultation with those living in the region. It captured their aspirations for the future of Moray and aims to boost economic growth on a long-term, sustainable basis. Led by Moray Council, the bid was supported by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), Moray College UHI, partners from public and third sectors, and private businesses within the area.
Mr Lochhead, said:
“The Moray Growth Deal will make a real lasting difference to the future of the region and inject confidence into the economy, improving the quality of life for local people.
“Successful delivery of this deal will create new high-value jobs, help safeguard the local economy and strengthen Moray’s communities. I am grateful to Moray Council and all their partners for their hard work in getting to this stage, and I recognise the important involvement of the community in developing the deal proposals.
“We will continue our dialogue with our Moray partners on projects that will have a transformative effect on the Moray economy. We will announce a Heads of Terms agreement as soon as possible, which will specify which projects will be supported by this significant joint investment.
“The Scottish Government has so far committed more than £1.7 billion over the next 10 to 20 years to City Region and Growth Deals and related investments across Scotland.”
Cabinet Office Minister David Lidington said:
“The UK Government is committed to supporting economic growth in Moray and I am delighted to announce £32.5 million in funding. This transformative package of support will boost the region’s economy by helping to attract and retain people to live and work in the area.
“These deals are a key part of the UK Government’s long-standing commitment to invest directly in Scotland’s future. They give communities the financial backing to develop projects that place Scotland at the forefront of innovation, technology and connectivity.
“As we work alongside the Scottish Government and local partners, this deal will help unlock the region’s economic potential for inclusive growth including supporting local services and attracting businesses.”
HIE's area manager for Moray, Donna Chisholm, said today’s funding announcement will be welcomed by businesses and residents who’ve contributed their ideas to the Deal. She said:
“The public consultation undertaken as part of this deal has been hugely influential in developing the proposed projects, including a greater emphasis on job creation, education, businesses, leisure and recreation facilities.”
The projects supported by the Moray Growth Deal will be revealed over the coming months. For more information and to keep up to date with the Growth Deal, visit: www.yourmoray.org.uk/ym_partnership/Page_105092.html