Theresa May and Nicola Sturgeon will formally sign off a deal to bring £1.3bn worth of investment into Edinburgh and the south east of Scotland as part of efforts to access economic growth across housing, innovation and transport sectors.
The Scottish Government and the UK government will each invest £300m over the next 15 years into the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal with contributions from partners ensuring the sum of investment reaching £1.3bn.
Part of the investment will see the creation of five new innovation hubs, including in robotics and space technologies, and a new 1000-seat Edinburgh concert hall. While the Scottish Government’s investment will contribute towards 41,000 new homes, 21,000 jobs and improve the skills of an estimated 14,700 people.
Funds will also go directly to scientific research on space, health sciences, agri-tech and food and drink at Heriot-Watt, Queen Margaret and Edinburgh universities.
Commenting on the deal, first minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “Edinburgh and the south east of Scotland is an area of huge importance to the Scottish economy. The region contains over a quarter of Scotland’s population and contributes £33bn to the Scottish and UK economies. The Scottish Government’s £300m investment in the City Region Deal will contribute towards 41,000 new homes, 21,000 jobs and improve the skills of an estimated 14,700 people across the region. Our investments will ensure businesses and communities from across the region benefit from the opportunities created by this the city region deal."
The latest investment pledge follows the signing of the terms for the Edinburgh City Deal last year, and is part of the UK government’s investment in UK City and growth Deals in Scotland which has now topped more than £1bn. That support has been matched by over £1bn of Scottish Government investment.
The Prime Minister will also announce £13m in funding for six science hubs across the country, including Dundee and Glasgow Science Centres, to help improve facilities, create new learning activities to help reach audiences and attract thousands of new visitors.
Prime minister Theresa May said: “I am pleased to be in Edinburgh today for the city’s annual celebration of the arts and culture. From the Fringe, to the International Festival, festivals dedicated to science, books and storytelling, the city is truly a cultural inspiration for the rest of the UK and the world. Alongside the Scottish Government and local partners, I will be confirming £300m, as part of a wider £1bn investment by the UK Government through City Deals in Scotland, to create jobs and open up new economic opportunities throughout the nation.”