Scotland's Economy

Open letter to businesses across Scotland

December 3, 2021 by No Comments | Category Business, Economy

Firstly, I want to thank all businesses for the agility and resilience you have shown over the past 20 months and ask you to help us harness that spirit to drive sustainable future growth

Today I am delighted to mark the beginning of a new era of cooperation between the Scottish Government and business leadership by publishing a Principles Agreement.

Through this new approach, developed jointly with business organisations, the Scottish Government and business have agreed a set of shared behaviours to underpin how we will work together constructively to improve Scotland’s economic outcomes. Learning from past experience of successful joint working, including throughout the pandemic, this underlines our refreshed commitment to co-development, collaborative delivery and collective assessment of policies targeted at business.

We know business leadership and creativity, across all types of business and as part of a wider national endeavour, will be essential in transforming Scotland’s economy and helping us recover from the economic impact of COVID-19. This Agreement is based on trust and mutual respect, and provides an overarching framework for our engagement with business. It makes clear businesses and business organisations should be involved throughout the development of policy where appropriate. We will ensure lived experience is at the centre of policy design which will impact on business.

Working collaboratively will help create a fairer, more just, prosperous, and equal Scotland with an economy that works for all. This Agreement provides a structure for us to work effectively with business as we take forward work in areas like transitioning to a net zero economy or becoming a Fair Work Nation, doing so in a way which welcomes business input throughout the development and delivery of individual initiatives. It also provides assurance to the business community that the Scottish Government will continue to listen to and fully consider business views and priorities.

While this Agreement has been developed with the nine organisations that have signed up, it sets the approach we will apply across all of the Scottish Government’s engagement with business and we will encourage the wider public sector to embrace a similar collaborative commitment. As we begin to implement this, I look forward to engaging with our diverse business base to further explore how we best deliver the collective action necessary to drive economic recovery and transformation.

Kate Forbes

Cabinet Secretary for Finance and the Economy


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