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Sir Tom Hunter backs Clyde Green Freeport | £36m ‘superfactory’ brings 400 jobs to Lanarkshire | Kwarteng ‘100 per cent not going anywhere’

SOME of Scotland’s most prominent business leaders have united behind the Clyde Green Freeport bid and have urged the Prime Minister and First Minister to back the deal later this month.

In an open letter, the business leaders highlight the transformational impact the bid could have on regenerating vacant, derelict, and underused land and that leaving the West of Scotland out of the Green Freeport programme risks missing out on the growth, levelling up and net-zero objectives.

The bid which is expected to be announced later this month could generate up to 45,000 new roles and add £18 billion to the economy.

Sir Tom Hunter is among the business heavyweights who are calling on both Governments to support the bid and the investment it will bring.

They include:

  • Derek Provan, chief executive, AGS Airports
  • Prof Sir Jim McDonald, Principal & Vice-Chancellor, University of Strathclyde
  • Stuart Patrick CBE, chief executive, Glasgow Chamber of Commerce
  • Sir Tom Hunter, philanthropist and entrepreneur
  • David Stirling, managing director, PD Stirling
  • Claudio Veritiero, chief executive, Peel Ports Group
  • Prof Sir Anton Muscatelli, Principal & Vice-Chancellor, University of Glasgow

They wrote: “From the continuing legacy of marine engineering to becoming Europe’s leading manufacturer of space satellites, the West of Scotland is a manufacturing and trading powerhouse.

“Our region has the scale, infrastructure and skilled workforce to make an even greater contribution to the country’s economic, manufacturing, net zero and exporting ambitions.

“Clyde Green Freeport is a key component to delivering on those ambitions, generating up to 45,000 new jobs, injecting £18 billion into the economy and transforming around 600 hectares of vacant, derelict, and underused land.

“The public, private and academic collaborations that form the basis of the bid are firmly established and have placed us at the leading edge of innovation in a range of fields including advanced manufacturing and life sciences.

“With a third of the country’s population and business base, Glasgow is also Scotland’s only metropolitan city region and, while that magnitude and diversity brings many opportunities, it means that issues such as deprivation and carbon emissions are experienced to a much greater degree here than anywhere else in the country.

“‘Team Glasgow’ has a proven track record for delivery, one that has endowed the region and this bid with the tools and the capacity to tackle these challenges.”

An Italian supplier to Scotland’s whisky industry has announced plans to consolidate its operations in this country at a new £36 million “superfactory” in Lanarkshire.

The investment by Guala Closures is supported by a £3.3m grant from Scottish Enterprise and follows planning approval for modern 220,000sq ft facility in Gartcosh, Lanarkshire.

CHANCELLOR Kwasi Kwarteng insisted the UK government’s “position hasn’t changed” on the mini-budget, despite multiple reports of an imminent U-turn on the package of unfunded tax cuts.

Sources have suggested that Liz Truss could even revisit the decision not to put up corporation tax from 19 per cent to 25%. 

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Scottish tycoon Sir Tom Hunter backs Clyde Green Freeport

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