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Growth Deals

Volume 650: debated on Wednesday 28 November 2018

5. What assessment he has made of the potential effect on the Scottish economy of future growth deals in Scotland. (907837)

Through city and growth deals the UK Government have already committed over £1 billion of investment to Scotland and are working on further growth deals for Borderlands, Ayrshire and Moray. The UK Government are committed to delivering a city and growth deal for every part of Scotland. City and growth deals show the benefits that are delivered to the economy when Scotland’s two Governments work together.

I thank the Minister for his answer and welcome him to his place. The UK Government have now invested over £1.1 billion in city deals across Scotland; does my hon. Friend agree that this is the Conservatives delivering for Scotland?

I thank my hon. Friend for his warm words of welcome and completely agree: the over-£1 billion of investment in Scotland’s cities shows that this Government have a clear role in delivering economic growth in Scotland. Just last week my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State was in Perth announcing £150 million of investment as part of the Tay cities deal. My hon. Friends the Members for Angus (Kirstene Hair) and for Ochil and South Perthshire (Luke Graham) were instrumental in securing investment not only for their constituencies, but for the whole region as part of the deal.

Given the recent news from Michelin that it will lose up to 850 jobs from Dundee, it is now more important than ever that all commitments on the Tay cities deal are met. The Scottish Government are committed to £200 million. Can the UK Government today give a guarantee that they will fully match that £200 million investment?

The hon. Gentleman rightly raises this issue, and I know how important it is to his constituency, but, as I said previously, £150 million is being committed to the region in a growth deal and we are working with the Scottish Government in the Michelin action group, which met on 12 November. With support from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy we have presented a number of potential areas for further exploration for repurposing the site either with Michelin or a third party, and I understand that the next action group meeting will be on 30 November.

Some £120 million was announced as part of the Edinburgh city deal to upgrade Sheriffhall roundabout, but the A720 city bypass that stems off the roundabout is chock-a-block, start to end every day, which will affect my constituents and those of the Secretary of State. This seems to have slipped down the Scottish Government agenda. Those constituents would like to know what conversations the Secretary of State has had with Scottish Government Ministers.

I thank the hon. Lady for her question. The deal for Edinburgh was signed on 7 August. There is a £300 million investment from this Government, and I know how important this is for her constituency. I will ask my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State to follow up on her question so that she has more details.