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Around 1800 new jobs expected in Enterprise Areas by 2020
Scotland's latest proposed Enterprise Area – the Biocity industrial tech incubator – could see employment boosted by another 180 new jobs in the next five years.
And based on growth rates already seen across the existing 15 Enterprise Areas (EAs) across Scotland, a potential 1800 jobs could be supported by the extension of the EA status until 2020.
First Minister announced plans to designate Biocity as an Enterprise Area in the Scottish Government's Programme for Government earlier this month, together with the extension of existing Enterprise Areas to 2020.
The First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon and Deputy First Minister, John Swinney toured the site today as part of a visit to neighbouring Coatbridge for the latest in the Scottish Government's series of travelling Cabinets.
The First Minister and Deputy First Minister were shown round some of Biocity's incubator hubs and met Sarah McCormack of Source BioScience, Chris Wardhaugh of Clyde BioScience, David Lightbody of Biogelx and Dr Debbie Allan from Insignia.
Ms Sturgeon said:
"Enterprise Areas in Scotland at sites like Irvine and Edinburgh's Bioquarter are already doing a terrific job creating new economic opportunities, new partnerships with education and – most importantly – new jobs across the country.
"Based on patterns of growth already seen at these existing sites, we expect potentially 1800 new jobs in Scotland's Enterprise Areas between now and 2020.
"Here at Biocity we expect to see up to 180 new jobs – highly skilled and high-value jobs in an area where we are continuing to work hard with partners to make sure the benefits of economic growth are felt across the board."
Dr Diane Harbison, Managing Director of BioCity Scotland, said:
"Since I arrived at BioCity Scotland just over a year ago, I have been working towards the goal of achieving Enterprise Area status, so to say I was delighted by the First Minister's announcement is an understatement.
"The boost that having Enterprise Area status will give to BioCity Scotland is huge. Businesses based here will now being able to take advantage of business rates relief, faster planning applications, skills support and assistance in accessing international markets.
"We are already home to some potentially world-class life science businesses, and we hope that this announcement will help us attract even more, bringing with them more high quality jobs for the area.
"It is also great news for our existing tenants, who will be able to invest the money they save in rates into developing new technologies, hiring more staff, purchasing new equipment or expanding into new markets."
Find out more about Scotland's Enterprise Areas here