£20m EU funding boost for Scottish businesses

The Scottish Government is to invest a total of £60 million into businesses supporting economic growth and employment, bolstered by European funding, First Minister Alex Salmond has announced.

The investment is leveraged by £20 million of European Regional Development Funding to support projects focusing on youth employment. 

The total £60 million investment will:

  • help to start 700 businesses and support 5,000 existing enterprises 
  • provide 3,000 jobs
  • be allocated to 43 economic development projects across the country.

The money will be 'implemented immediately' to businesses, local Government and charities, delivering 'business competitiveness, innovation and improving employment opportunities to people throughout Scotland', the Scottish Executive said.

The announcement follows latest figures from the Office for National Statistics showing that employment in Scotland is at its highest level for five years.

First Minister Alex Salmond said: "In June the Scottish Government asked for proposals from across the country, from organisations including local authorities, the third sector, small business and our universities of ways in which they could support economic development, create jobs and build new businesses."

"Each project will create opportunities for our young people and will contribute to Scotland's sustainable economic growth."