2014: positive year for the Scottish economy
This Government is determined to build a fairer, more sustainable, and more balanced economy and 2014 saw the Scottish economy log its strongest performance in seven years. With further headway in economic conditions expected next year, this should bring opportunity for business and security for hard working people across the country.
The picture in the labour market continues to strengthen. Scotland is leading the way with the highest employment and economic activity rates and lowest unemployment rate of the home nations of the UK. We have a record high in female employment, we are closing the gender gap and youth unemployment is at a five-year low.
It is good to see household confidence growing as people’s job and pay prospects are improving but more needs to be done to help families after an unprecedented period of difficulty which has seen families struggle to meet living costs.
Looking forward to 2015 my budget will continue to enhance economic growth, tackle inequalities and continue to protect and invest in Scotland’s public services.
We will see £4.5 billion of infrastructure investment in 2015-16 and this Government will support £330 million of further capital investment in our Scotland’s Schools for the Future programme. In addition we will provide £140 million to deliver 2 new college campuses and we will continue to deliver the most competitive business tax environment in the UK. We will also invest in the future of our economy through £16.6 million in 2015-16 to further take forward recommendations of the Commission for Developing Scotland’s Young Workforce.
The Scottish Government is focused on delivering a stronger, fairer, and more resilient economy in 2015 and beyond.