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24/06/13 10:29

Consultation puts economic growth at forefront

Planning Minister meets business sector to discuss planning system

Proposed changes to Scotland’s planning system will put a greater emphasis on economic benefits, including creating new jobs, Planning Minister Derek Mackay will tell key members of Scotland’s business community this week.

Mr Mackay will meet with Scotland’s business leaders during a series of engagements taking place around the country to support the Scottish Government’s public consultation on Scotland’s third National Planning Framework (NPF3) and a revised Scottish Planning Policy.

The Planning Minister will discuss how proposed changes to the planning system will place a greater weight on economic impact. This includes the creation of new jobs as well as recognising and responding to economic conditions.

Mr Mackay said:

“The Scottish Government is focussed on sustainable economic growth, and as Planning Minister I am intent on delivering a planning system that is enabling this objective.

“This is about the culture and practice of planning on the ground. An explicit emphasis on economic impact in planning deliberations is both necessary and timely. I believe we are making good progress.

“During the consultation process I have been meeting with local authorities, developers, environmental groups and members of the public. By meeting with key players from Scotland’s business community I will gain further feedback on the consultation which will assist in our drive to push forward sustainable economic growth.

“By providing a clear vision, the proposals will be used to guide future development that will help Scotland achieve its ambitious climate change targets, ensure we have resilient national infrastructure and also increase protection for our country’s most environmentally important areas.”

At this week’s events Mr Mackay will meet with some of Scotland’s main business players including the Confederation for Business and Industry, Scottish Retail Consortium, Scottish Chamber of Commerce as well as private companies such as Asda and leading property and legal firms.

Events include:

Planning and Economic Growth event, Glasgow, June 24

SCDI Influencers Dinner, Inverness, June 24

Keynote speaker at the Scottish Renewables onshore wind conference, June 25

Business planning event, Edinburgh, June 26

Planning Breakfast Seminar, Edinburgh, June 27

The third National Planning Framework (NPF3) and draft Scottish Planning Policy (SPP) will influence development plans across Scotland and guide future planning decisions on a range of sectors including transport, energy and infrastructure.

These draft proposals are supported by on-going measures to improve the overall performance of the planning system, ensuring smoother delivery and a stronger focus on economic recovery.

Plans include creating two carbon capture and storage schemes at Peterhead and Grangemouth and making Prestwick Airport into an area of National Development which will focus on the aerospace sector.

Kathleen Hutchinson, Property Acquisitions for ASDA Scotland showed her support for the consultation, said:

“We are delighted to be participating in this event and welcome the proposals from the Scottish Government to place greater emphasis on economic conditions in delivering development.

“This is something we have been lobbying for a considerable period of time and it is good to see the Scottish Government’s commitment to delivering sustainable economic growth through planning measures such as this.

“As a major supermarket operator our 56 Scottish stores have delivered around 20,000 jobs the length and breadth of the country, delivering millions of pounds of investment into local communities and spending over £1.1 billion with Scottish suppliers.

“We are clearly keen to deliver new stores and ensure that communities continue to benefit from the significant investment supermarkets such as ourselves can bring. Anything that can assist in creating a planning environment that eases this process is welcomed.”

Notes to editors

The planning consultation is on-going until July 23. Consultation documents are available at: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Built-Environment/planning/NPF3-SPP-Review