Creating a Wealthier Scotland
The SNP are committed to creating a wealthier, more successful Scotland. We want Scotland to flourish, with opportunities for all as part of a fairer economy. The foundations of Scotland’s economy are strong – but there’s much more we want to do. We can deliver more and better paid jobs, share the fruits of success amongst our citizens more equally, and create stronger, more sustainable growth.
Our vision is of a Scotland with a competitive, fairer and more sustainable economy. The SNP want Scotland to be the most competitive place to do business and to invest in the UK.
We are encouraging Scottish businesses to grow and expand, both at home and overseas.
We have introduced a £500 million Scottish Growth Scheme to support businesses - particularly start-up companies - with the potential to grow and export more. This is in addition to the SNP’s longstanding support for small businesses through the Small Business Bonus. Our package of business rates measures provides a boost of almost £100m and helps keep Scotland the most attractive place in the UK to do business.
The SNP are committed to creating jobs across Scotland, and will continue to push for the devolution of powers to the Scottish Parliament over job creation, taxation, welfare and wages to allow us to make policies best suited to Scotland’s labour market.
The Scottish Government appointed the UK’s first Minister for Youth Employment in 2011, and has made youth and women’s employment a priority. Substantial support is offered to young people through our Modern Apprenticeships scheme, a dedicated Employability Fund, and by maintaining and increasing Educational Maintenance Allowance, which was scrapped by Westminster in England. These measures helped us to meet our target to reduce youth unemployment by 40% by 2021, four years ahead of schedule.
To help achieve our goal of a fairer economy we are encouraging businesses to pay the Living Wage. In 2011 we became the first government in the UK to pay the Living Wage to its staff; and there are now 1000 Living Wage accredited employers in Scotland - more than a quarter of the UK total.The Scottish Business Pledge also demonstrates our desire to encourage businesses to invest in young people, progress diversity and pay the Living Wage.
More people in Scotland are in employment than the pre-recession high point.
Since 2014, we have reduced youth unemployment by 48.3 per cent – exceeding our 40 per cent reduction target four years ahead of schedule.
Youth unemployment is the third lowest of any country in the EU.
The SNP Scottish Government has presided over the Scottish economy experiencing its longest period of uninterrupted growth since 2001.
Small businesses have saved more than a billion pounds in Business Rates since we introduced the the Small Business Bonus Scheme.