Islands Growth Deal Signed

£100million – £50million from the UK Government and £50million from the Scottish Government – and covering a period of 10 years will deliver a ‘Growth Deal’ for the 3 Islands Authorities: Orkney, Shetland and Comhairle nan Eilean Siar.

The Islands Growth Deal requires a collaborative approach by the UK, Scottish and local governments.

It comes at a time when Orkney has been hit hard by the complete loss of the Cruise Ship trade in 2020 due to Covid restrictions. The islands, like everywhere else has had its economy devastated by the double whammy of the pandemic and leaving the EU.

There is also the loss of well paid highly skilled jobs as HIAL moves forward, despite local opposition, to centralise its air traffic control operations in a Remote Tower in Inverness. HIAL’s Remote Towers Project Threat to Future Renewables Developments

The focus of The Growth Deal is in the areas of:

  • low carbon technologies
  • creative industries and wellbeing
  • skills and talent attraction

The Deal allows for the development of island specific projects.

The Scottish Government will invest up to £50 million over 10 years, and the UK Government will invest up to £50 million over 10 years, subject to approval of full business cases for each project outlined in this document. Islands Growth Deal

It is expected that partners involved in the projects will provide match funding . The Deal makers state that “This will result in a Deal worth £335 million” and will attract 1,300 jobs over the 3 Islands Authorities.

The Energy Sector.

£27million (UK Govt) and £16million (Scot Gov). The partners involved will contribute £149million.

Islands Centre for Net Zero

It will have a joint investment of £16 (UK Gov) and £0.5million (Scot Gov)

The Shetland Clean Energy Project £5million (as part of the funding for the Islands Centre for Net Zero project)

Using wind energy in Shetland to produce green hydrogen

The Scapa Flow Future Fuels Hub £6.5million (Scot Gov)

  • a centre for international ship-to-ship transfer operations
  • provision of deep water marine support services for offshore wind farms
  • the UK hub for storage, supply and bunkering of low and zero carbon fuels
  • the UK’s marine gateway to the Arctic
  • the diversification of Flotta Oil Terminal from high carbon fuel reliance to a world-class centre of excellence for the research and development of low and zero carbon fuel technologies.

The Outer Hebrides Energy Hub £11million (UK Gov)

  • Based in Stornoway Port Authority’s new £50 million Deep Water Terminal
  • Using onshore and offshore wind to produce green hydrogen to convert Stornoway Town Centre Gas Network from propane to hydrogen
  • Export of hydrogen by sea to identified European markets through conversion to containerised ammonia or methanol or by direct pipeline to demand centres on the west coast Scottish mainland.

The Dales Voe Ultra-Deep Water Port Project £9million (Scot Gov)

  • Creating a deep water facility minimum depth 24 metres
  • Decommissioning facility for oil and gas
  • Future renewable structures

Growth and Innovation

Investment of £17million (Scot Gov) and £13.5million (UK Gov). Investment from partners of £39million

The Creative Islands Wellbeing Project £3.5million (Scot Gov) £2.6million (UK Gov)

  • This will work over the 3 Islands Authorities.
  • Partners include NHS Orkney, NHS Shetland and NHS Western Isles for an ‘Islands Centre for Creative Ageing’

The Outer Hebrides Destination Development project £4million (Scot Gov) £4million (UK Gov)

The Orkney World Heritage Gateway project £5.5million (Scot Gov) £1million (UK Gov)

  • Ring of Brodgar, Stones of Stenness, Maeshowe improvements to visitor experience.
  • Improving facilities at Skara Brae
  • Developing digital visitor information

The Orkney Community Vertical Farm £1.5million (UK Gov) £0.5million (Scot Gov)

creating an islands’ vertical farm with associated research and development laboratories and business incubation facilities based at the University of the Highlands and Islands Agronomy Institute in Orkney

The Shell-volution £4.4million (UK Gov)

Improving and expanding mussel farming in Shetland

The Outer Hebrides Food and Drink Programme £1.5million (Scot Gov)

  • Local food hub at Grogarry.
  • Ice plant, chill facilities and other improvements at pier head to facilitate local supply.
  • Community food hub / food growing projects

The Outer Hebrides Spaceport 1 project £1million (Scot Gov)

The Shetland Space Innovation Campus project £1million (Scot Gov)

Academic and Research Projects

£17million (ScotGov) and £9.5million (UK Gov) with investment by partners of £47million

The TalEntEd Islands Programme £4.4million (Scot Gov) £1.5million (UK Gov)

The Orkney Research and Innovation Campus 2 (ORIC 2) £8million (UK Gov)

The Shetland Campus Redevelopment £2million (Scot Gov)

The Outer Hebrides Campus Redevelopment project £1.5million (Scot Gov)

The Shetland Knab Redevelopment project £9.1million (Scot Gov)

You can read all the details here:

A round up of reaction to the Islands Growth Deal will follow.

Reporter: Fiona Grahame

3 replies »

  1. It is if course all Scotland’s money. Westminster are trying to buy votes with their pretendy sweeteners to certain parts of Scotland.
    Don’t worry they will claw back the money somehow, with interest. Quite sinister, they cut the budget, Scotland’s own money, and take Scotland’s £trillions, while attempting to portray Scotland as too poor.
    Clever lot I guess, cunning thieves in reality.

  2. Oh Dear! Whats happened to the Marine Plan OIC were supposed to be working on?