City Region and Growth Deals are packages of funding agreed between the Scottish Government, the UK Government and local partners. They are designed to bring about long-term improvements to regional economies, attracting additional investment, creating new jobs and accelerating inclusive economic growth.
Each deal is bespoke, reflecting each region’s individual economic strengths and challenges and developed by both the Scottish and UK Governments working with partners from the broader public sector, such as Scottish Enterprise and Skills Development Scotland, as well as from businesses, colleges and universities.
City Region and Growth Deals have now been announced for every part of Scotland, with the Scottish Government investment totalling more than £1.6 billion.
There are six City Region Deals and six Regional Growth Deals in Scotland.
Glasgow City Region
The Scottish Government are investing £520 million in the £1.2 billion Glasgow City Region Deal, which covers eight local neighbouring authorities across Glasgow and the Clyde Valley.
Signed in 2014, the deal supports the region to achieve its long-term vision for the local economy, through projects focusing on infrastructure, skills and employment and business growth and innovation.
Scottish Government investments include £500 million for critical infrastructure improvements, improving public transport and connectivity, and £20 million to create a ground-breaking medical research & commercialisation facility, developing new products and services in the life science sector.
Regional partners estimate that over its lifetime, the deal will deliver around 29,000 jobs and attract around £3.3 billion of private sector investment.
The Scottish Government have committed to invest up to £125 million in the Aberdeen City Region Deal, matched by the UK Government. Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire Councils, Opportunity North East, other regional partners and the private sector have committed up to £44 million.
The deal, signed in 2016, aims to boost innovation, internationalisation, digital connectivity, and infrastructure across the region. Investments made by the Scottish Government include £90 million to support the Oil and Gas Technology Centre, and £15 million towards new innovation hubs focusing on research, development and growth in the life sciences and food and drink sectors.
Alongside the deal, the Scottish Government have committed a further £254 million to the North East over the same timeframe. This additional investment will deliver improved transport and broadband networks, and local housing programmes.
Up to £135 million has been committed by the Scottish Government to the Inverness and Highland City Region Deal. The UK Government has committed up to £53 million, supplemented by up to £127 million from the Highland council and regional partners.
Signed in 2017, the deal seeks to boost key sectors such as tourism and life sciences, realise ambitions of becoming the best digitally connected rural region in Europe and promote innovation and internationalisation, creating new well-paid jobs that will help retain and attract young people to the region.
Scottish Government investments include £15 million for redevelopment of Inverness Castle into a “must-see” attraction showcasing the culture and heritage of the whole region, and £6 million for targeted housing projects across the region.
Partners estimate that £800 million in private sector investment will be leveraged over the life of the deal, and over 3000 new jobs created.
The Scottish Government have committed £300 million in the £1.3 billion Edinburgh and South East City Region Deal, with investments from UK Government of £300 million and further commitments from partners from six local authorities, universities and colleges, and the private and third sectors.
The deal, signed in 2018, will deliver improvements in innovation, housing, critical infrastructure and a new skills programme, unlocking access to good opportunities for people across the region.
Scottish Government investments include £10 million to support cutting edge research in future technologies, putting the region at the forefront of data-driven innovation, £45 million to support and enable construction of 41,000 new homes across the region, and £25 million for a skills programme that will improve the skills of an estimated 14,700 people.
Both the Scottish Government and the UK Government have committed up to £45.1 million each towards the Stirling and Clackmannanshire City Region Deal. Regional partners will match this investment with up to £123.8 million, resulting in a deal worth over £214 million.
Signed in 2020, the deal aims to create higher value jobs, investing in the creation of green innovations, digital entrepreneurship and cultural opportunities to deliver a more diverse regional economy, whilst widening access to opportunity and supporting inclusion.
Scottish Government investments include £15 million to support culture, tourism and heritage across the region, £4 million to enhance digital connectivity in both urban and rural areas, and over £9 million to projects that enhance skills, active travel and planning for the use of green energy.
A further £5 million has been committed by the Scottish Government, which will support the delivery of enabling infrastructure at Callander and Kildean. The total Scottish Government investment in the region has the potential to deliver 1,500 new jobs and £275 million of private sector leverage.
The Tay Cities Deal will deliver more than £700 million to the region, including £150 million each from the Scottish Government and the UK Government. Together with regional partners’ contribution, this deal has the potential to secure more than 6,000 jobs and attract £400 million of investment.
Signed in 2020, the deal seeks to transform the region by focusing on inclusion, innovation, internationalisation, connectivity and empowerment, and supports projects which aim to promote inclusive economic growth across the region.
Scottish Government investments include £20 million in a skills and employability programme, £25 million to grow the region’s biomedical sector, and £37 million to support the region’s culture and tourism offerings.
The Scottish Government have also confirmed a further £50 million for the region, which will be invested in the Cross Tay Link Road and an industrial investment programme to support manufacturing businesses.
The Ayrshire Growth Deal was signed in November 2020, with a commitment of £103 million investment from the Scottish Government over the next 10 years to deliver inclusive growth across Ayrshire. The UK Government will also be investing £103 million into the region over the next 15 years and regional partners will contribute £45.5 million to a total Deal worth £251.5 million.
Regional partners estimate the deal will create 7,000 new jobs and unlock an additional £300 million from the private sector.
Investments from the Scottish Government include £40 million for innovative projects around engineering, manufacturing and digital automation, £30 million for an Aerospace and Space Programme, £18.5 million for tourism and regeneration and £14.5 million for regional projects around skills, community wealth building and digital infrastructure.
The Borderlands Deal involves five local authorities: Dumfries and Galloway, Scottish Borders, Carlisle City, Cumbria and Northumberland working together to promote inclusive economic growth in the South of Scotland and North of England.
Borderlands partners have identified priority themes for transforming the region as a whole: digital, energy, place, destination, mountain biking, business infrastructure, knowledge exchange, land and marine, transport.
Heads of terms for Borderlands were signed in July 2019, with commitments of up to £85 million over 10 years from the Scottish Government, and up to £65 million from the UK Government in the Scottish elements of the deal.
In December 2021, the Scottish Government signed the Full Deal Agreement for the Moray Growth Deal with the UK Government and Moray Council. The contribution of £32.5 million by each of the Scottish and UK Governments will lever a further £35.8 million from regional partners, together delivering an investment into inclusive economic growth worth over £100 million over the next 10 years.
The deal will attract and retain young people and families in Moray, create high-quality jobs in existing sectors and support diversification into new high-value areas, generate opportunities for future community prosperity, and address inequalities such as the gender pay gap.
The projects being supported through this deal are significant and strategic. £12.7 million will boost the region’s tourism offer and improve its cultural facilities, £4 million will provide more efficient and accessible green bus services tailored to rural needs, £2 million will help develop a centre for manufacturing and innovation that will enable businesses in sectors like space and aerospace, food and drink and other manufacturing areas to improve production, £5 million will create a minimum of 300 affordable homes and help local people to get onto the property ladder, £3.5 million will enable more young people, especially girls, to forge their future careers in STEM areas and £5.3 million will create a business and enterprise hub to enhance business support and facilities, encouraging new start-ups, and upscaling existing micro businesses to develop Moray’s rural economy.
Moray partners anticipate that this will directly and indirectly create over 3,500 jobs across a wide range of sectors as part of growth deal project delivery, increasing the value of the Moray economy by £82 million. The Moray Growth Deal partners are now working to develop business cases for each project.
In October 2019 the Scottish and UK Governments each committed investment of up to £25 million in the Argyll and Bute Growth Deal.
This investment will support a range of projects designed to drive inclusive economic growth throughout Argyll and Bute. Officials will continue to work with partners in Argyll and Bute to help them develop and refine those projects that they think will have the transformative effect on the local economy that we all want to see.
All partners in the deal look forward to being able to announce a heads of terms agreement as soon as possible, which will specify which projects will be supported by this joint investment.
The Scottish Government announced a £40 million investment over ten years in the Falkirk Growth Deal in July 2020. In addition to Growth Deal investment, the Scottish Government has decided to invest an additional £10 million in Falkirk for green recovery projects, bringing total investment to £50 million.
The Falkirk Growth Deal will develop Falkirk’s ambitions for inclusive economic growth, including the opportunities unlocked from Grangemouth’s national significance as Scotland’s largest industrial site.
Officials from the Scottish Government and UK Government will continue to work with Falkirk, to agree Heads of Terms, setting out the specific projects to be funded by the deal, which will help to unlock investment and drive inclusive growth across the area.
Islands Growth Deal
On 20 January 2023 the Scottish Government signed the Full Deal Agreement for the Islands Growth Deal with the UK Government, Orkney Islands Council, Shetland Islands Council and Comhairle nan Eilean Siar. This Deal committed a £50 million investment from each of the Scottish and UK Governments to sustainable, inclusive economic growth across Orkney, Shetland and the Outer Hebrides.
The Deal will support the priority themes identified by the Islands Growth Deal partners:
leading the way to a low carbon future
supporting growth and future industries
creating thriving, sustainable communities
This investment will lever a further £293 million from regional partners to deliver a Deal worth almost £400 million over the next 10 years.
The 16 projects and programmes included in the Deal span a number of areas including:
food and drink
The significant investment by the Scottish Government in 13 of those projects and programmes will be delivered as follows:
£16 million to support three projects in the Low Carbon theme, which will contribute to our net-zero commitments by supporting energy transition, delivering port infrastructure for decommissioning, and piloting decarbonisation in an island context
£15.5 million to support six projects in the Growth and Future Industries theme, through development of significant Island tourism and cultural assets, and innovation in key Space, Food and Drink and Creative Industries sectors
£18.5 million to support four projects in the Thriving Sustainable Communities theme, through expansion of existing learning facilities, sustainable housing provision, and investment in a skills programme targeting key sectors including decarbonisation and renewable energy
Island Deal partners anticipate the Deal will directly deliver up to 1,300 new jobs, aimed at retaining and attracting young people to address demographic challenges in the islands, and support the islands to be among the first places in the UK to achieve net zero. It will create the foundation for an innovation-focused recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, and showcase the islands’ outstanding natural environment, heritage, culture and creativity to the world.