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Assessment Process

To help create a Supportive Business Environment, in 2011 the Government Economic Strategy provided a commitment to establish four Enterprise Areas in Scotland – including sites with a particular focus on low carbon manufacturing opportunities.


Assessment process

The economic development agencies - Scottish Enterprise and Highland and Islands Enterprise – working closely with the Scottish Government identified a range of potential Enterprise Area sites across Scotland.

This was not intended to be an exhaustive list of all significant developable sites in Scotland but rather, those which could best generate early employment opportunities and boost the economic recovery. By focusing on growth sectors and seeking to optimise the use of Scotland’s natural resources and knowledge, Enterprise Areas can help develop an international competitive advantage in sectors like renewables manufacturing.

Enterprise Areas will aim to maximise strategic manufacturing opportunities in Scotland’s growth sectors and industries, thus creating supply chain and support opportunities locally and across Scotland.

The sites, identified in partnership with the economic development agencies, were rigorously assessed to determine where Enterprise Area status could generate the greatest benefits. Each site was assessed against the following criteria;

  • Evidence of market failure or barriers to growth which Enterprise Area incentives could help remove.
  • Evidence of the opportunity for additionality, that is, the ability to create new jobs and increase growth.
  • Evidence of the need for improved local economic performance.
  • Development challenges which could prevent early site delivery.


Enterprise Area Incentives

A range of incentives will be available to encourage private investment at each Enterprise Area site. These could potentially include business rates discounts and a streamlined planning process. Scottish Development International will provide assistance in marketing the Enterprise Areas abroad, while the Government will seek to maximise any opportunities presented by Scotland's Digital Future - Infrastructure Action Plan to make Enterprise Areas as attractive as possible.

In addition, engagement with the UK Government is ongoing to explore the scope to offer enhanced capital allowances for investment in plant and machinery, as an alternative to business rates discounts, at a limited number of Enterprise Area sites.
 
Further details on the incentives available at individual sites.


Enterprise Area Locations

On 17 January 2012, the Cabinet Secretary for Finance Employment and Sustainable Growth, John Swinney announced the locations where, subject to detailed engagement with the relevant local authorities on aspects of implementation, it is intended to establish Enterprise Areas in Scotland.  These locations are listed below.

 

Life Sciences Enterprise Area Low Carbon / Renewables North Enterprise Area

Irvine (N. Ayrshire)
Forres (Moray)
Inverness Campus (Highland)
BioQuarter (Edinburgh)
Biocampus (Midlothian)

Hatston (Orkney)
Arnish (Western Isles)
Nigg (Highland)
Scrabster (Highland)
Lyness (Orkney)

Low Carbon / Renewables East Enterprise Area General Manufacturing and Growth Sectors Enterprise Area
Dundee Port (Dundee City)
Leith (Edinburgh)
Creative Clyde (Glasgow City)
Prestwick International - aerospace (S. Ayrshire)

However, the Scottish Government recognises that a much broader range of sites will remain attractive as locations for companies establishing themselves or growing in Scotland, without the added impetus of Enterprise Area status.  These locations will still be able to benefit, as appropriate, from existing forms of Government support as well as the business development services of Scottish Enterprise and Highland and Islands Enterprise.


Range of Sites Considered for Inclusion in Enterprise Areas

In reaching a decision on which sites to include within Scotland’s Enterprise Areas, Ministers took into account the outcome of site assessments and scoring, but also considered a number of other factors.  In some cases, these factors meant not selecting sites that had scored comparatively well in individual site assessments.  The additional factors considered included: 

  • The need to ensure a reasonable geographic spread to ensure equity, while recognising that the greatest potential for the first wave of renewable energy manufacturing and generation is in the North and East of Scotland, with opportunities spreading to the West in the medium to longer term.  
  • Supporting opportunities in renewables but also in other growth sectors.
  • Complementing rather than overlapping with other initiatives, such as Tax Incremental Financing, to ensure that public sector resources impact as widely as possible.
  • The ability of some sites, working together, to stimulate wider economic and employment benefits by generating supply chain and support linkages to the firms locating within the Enterprise Area site.
  • Specific sectoral market issues.
  • The level of public resource already contributed and committed to initiatives within a particular area.

The table below sets out, by sector, all the sites which were fully assessed and considered as potential Enterprise Area locations. Those highlighted in bold are the locations which, subject to detailed engagement with the relevant local authorities on aspects of implementation, it is intended to take forward as Enterprise Areas: 

Life Sciences Enterprise Area - Potential Sites

Site Score
Irvine (N. Ayrshire)
Forres (Moray)
Inverness Campus (Highland)    
Biocampus (Midlothian)
BioQuarter (Edinburgh)

Inverness Airport (Highland)
BioCity (N. Lanarkshire)
100
90
90
80
80

80
70

 Low Carbon / Renewable Energy Enterprise Area - Potential Sites

Site Score

Dundee Port (Dundee City)
Hatston (Orkney)
Arnish (Western Isles)
Nigg (Highland)

ITREZ (Glasgow City)
Machrihanish (Argyll & Bute)
Scrabster (Highland)
Leith (Edinburgh)
Lyness (Orkney)

Energy Park Fife (Fife)
Hunterston (N. Ayrshire)
Peterhead Port & Energetica (Aberdeenshire)
Arderseir (Highland)
Kishorn (Highland)
Rosyth (Fife)
Inchgreen (Inverclyde)
Montrose South (Angus)
Grangemouth (Falkirk)
Westway (Renfrewshire)
Aberdeen Port (Aberdeen City)

100
100
100
100

100
100
90
90
90

90
90
90
90
90
80
80
80
80
70
    60    

 General Manufacturing and Growth Sectors Enterprise Area - Potential Sites

Site Score
Creative Clyde (Glasgow City)
Clyde Gateway (Glasgow)
Dunstaffnage (Argyll & Bute)
Prestwick International (S. Ayrshire)
Kilmarnock (E. Ayrshire)
Annan Industry Park (Dumfries & Galloway)
Dundee Central Waterfront (Dundee City)
100
100
100
80
80
80
    70    

The accompanying PDF document provides individual summary assessments for all of these sites.


Additional Sites Considered

We considered 50 possible locations in the long list of sites identified, in partnership with Scottish Enterprise and Highland and Islands Enterprise.  In line with appraisal best practice, the 50 sites were subject to an initial assessment to determine which sites had the greatest potential to benefit from Enterprise Area status in the short to medium term.  Following this initial appraisal, 16 sites were sifted out, with the remaining 34 sites taken forward for more detailed consideration. 

The sift took account of issues like risk of flood, possible environmental concerns requiring mitigation through the planning process, and the availability of immediately developable land all of which would make it difficult for these 16 sites to be ready for business occupation in the near future. 

The 16 sites sifted out after the initial assessment are listed below:

Potential Enterprise Area Site Potential Enterprise Area Site
Ardeer (N. Ayrshire)
Barmuckity (Moray)
BASF - Paisley (Renfrewshire)
Buckie (Moray)
Dunbar / Torness (East Lothian)
Edinburgh International (Edinburgh)
Elgin West (Moray)
Inverness Harbour (Highland)
Marine Resource Centre, Barcaldine (Argyll & Bute)
Shetland - Sella Ness / Sullom Voe (Shetland)
Shetland - Dales Voe (Shetland)
Stromness (Orkney)
Wick (Highland)
Invergordon - CFPA (Highland)
Halbeath (Fife)
Highland Deephaven (Highland)