Call for urgent meeting on funding
Lack of engagement on prosperity fund “counterproductive”.
Investment Minister Ivan McKee is urging the UK Government to reverse its decision to cancel talks on the scheme which will replace EU structural funds.
A planned meeting with Housing, Communities and Local Government Minister Luke Hall was cancelled last month and now Mr McKee has been told it will not take place until after the UK Government’s Comprehensive Spending Review, which is expected to contain full details of the new UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF).
It follows concern expressed by the devolved nations at the lack of information on how the UKSPF will work and what its value will be. The Scottish Government is seeking an assurance that funding decisions will be fully devolved, matching the way EU structural funds are currently managed.
Mr McKee has written to Mr Hall, asking that their meeting is reinstated as a matter of urgency.
He yesterday said:
“European structural funds have played a vital role in supporting Scotland’s economic and social policy aims.
“To keep the Scottish Government and the other devolved nations at arm’s length during the development of their replacement – which will play an important role in our economic recovery from COVID-19 – is both counterproductive and potentially detrimental to the future success of the Fund.
“We have been clear throughout that all future replacement funding should be fully devolved so that the Scottish Government can target it in a way that meets the specific needs of Scotland's people, businesses and communities.
“To do otherwise would be to ignore both the spirit and day-to-day realities of devolution. The UK Government would be taking back control from Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast, not Brussels.
“I hope Mr Hall will reconsider his decision and engage with me urgently on all these points.”
A copy of the Minister’s letter is attached.
EU structural funds are intended to reduce economic inequalities between regions and are worth over £780 million to Scotland for the period 2014-2020.
In Scotland the European Regional Development Fund and the European Social Fund have supported a wide range of projects including skills training, business start-ups, tackling poverty, cultural and heritage schemes and developing communities.
Latest News from
Supporting health and social care staff27/11/2020 16:15:00
Key workers are using National Wellbeing Hub.
Transforming Scotland’s convenience store sector27/11/2020 14:15:00
Increasing sales of fresh, healthy Scottish produce.
Sheku Bayoh Public Inquiry to begin next week27/11/2020 10:05:00
The independent Public Inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the death of Sheku Bayoh will begin next Monday, 30 November, Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf has announced.
Carers urged to seek support27/11/2020 08:05:00
Still Game star highlights valued work of the country’s carers in new campaign.
Testing expansion update26/11/2020 15:05:00
New testing approach set out for health and social care sector and communities.
Guidance for students returning home26/11/2020 12:05:00
Plans for mass testing of asymptomatic students.
Vital support to offset Brexit damage26/11/2020 10:05:00
Measures to help protect health services, the economy and communities.
Monthly GDP Estimates for September26/11/2020 08:05:00
Scotland’s GDP increased by 1.6% in September, according to statistics announced yesterday by the Chief Statistician.