During the pandemic so far the Scottish Government has provided £2.3 billion investment in our businesses – helping to mitigate some of the worst impacts of lockdown.
As we move into the next phase of the pandemic and continue to ease lockdown we must now look to support those who may face redundancy or will not have the job opportunities that would normally be open to them.
In doing so we have an opportunity to retrain and reskill people for the jobs of the future. So the government commit to using all the tools at their disposal and to working with business and the third sector in a national mission to help create new jobs, good jobs and green jobs.
The Governments commitment is to address the twin challenges of biodiversity loss and climate change remains unwavering throughout, and delivering a green recovery is at the heart of their response.
To support jobs and realise their climate ambitions they are committing to the next tranche of our Green New Deal. They are ramping up and committing to multiyear investments to send a clear signal to supply chains to invest in people and technology, and help them deliver the net zero transition.
To support this mission
A £60 million Youth Guarantee, so every young person aged between 16 and 24 will be guaranteed an opportunity at university or college, an apprenticeship programme, employment including work experience, or participating in a formal volunteering programme. This will be backed by additional funding for apprenticeships and the new Job Start Grant
An initial £25 million National Training Transition Fund to provide retraining opportunities for people who have lost their jobs or are at risk of doing so
Create a £100 million Green Jobs fund, investing alongside a range of sectors – such as manufacturing, tech, and land based organisations – to support new and increased opportunities for green job creation across Scotland
An additional £2.35 million for the Parental Employability Support Fund for those most at‑risk of poverty, including disabled, young, and ethnic minority parents
A £1.6 billion investment over the next Parliament to decarbonise the way we heat our home and our buildings, reducing emissions, tackling fuel poverty and creating new jobs
£60 million to support decarbonisation of the industrial and manufacturing sector – driving down emissions and protecting jobs
A new Inward investment strategy, to give people new skills, and attract investment and jobs into Scotland, with the potential to generate 100,000 high value jobs over the next decade
Invest £1.5 million in the next phase of the Unlocking Ambition programme, which provides grant and specialist wraparound support for early stage, growth potential businesses, with a new focus on low carbon and economic recovery
Steadily increase Scotland’s annual infrastructure investment until it is £1.5 billion higher by the end of the next Parliament than in 2019‑20
Capitalise the Scottish National Investment Bank with £2 billion over ten years, with a primary mission to support the transition to net zero emissions
A £62 million Energy Transition Fund to support businesses in the oil, gas and energy sectors over the next five years as they grow and diversify, and help attract private sector investment in the North East
Work with trade unions and employers to pioneer new ways of embedding fair work practices in all workplaces. We will also tackle the discrimination and unfair practices towards minority ethnic people
Doubling the Flexible Workforce Development Fund to £20m – enabling employers to access up to £15,000 each to address skills gaps in their workforce
Establishing a national network of world-class start up incubators, “Tech Scalers”, with the aim of creating and supporting between 300 and 500 high quality start‑ups over the next 5 years
Commit an additional £23m this year to help more digitally excluded people get online – providing both devices and internet connections. This will bring the total number of people supported to 50,000 by the end of the year
Investing £150 million over the next five years in forestry to support the economy and our net zero goal
The imperative of keeping COVID-19 under control continues to place constraints on many businesses. However, controlling the virus is a pre‑requisite of a sustainable recovery in the medium to longer term.
Many businesses will be understandably frustrated about continuing constraints on their activity but we have to balance this against the devastating impact a further national lockdown would have. Suppressing – and working to eliminate – the virus will protect jobs and help employers retain staff and plan more securely for the future. That is why one of the governments most significant economic investments this year will be in testing, contact tracing and surveillance.
They continue to argue for an extension of the furlough scheme for those sectors and employers who for public health reasons are still not able to operate or who will struggle most during the recovery and for furlough to be retained in the event of the need for local lockdowns.