Thursday, March 08, 2012

Liberal Democrats Deliver: Green Investment Bank is Edinburgh bound

Liberal Democrat Business Secretary Vince Cable has announced today that the Green Investment Bank, a key element of Liberal Democrat policy will be based in Edinburgh and London, combining the advantages of Edinburgh's green sector and a base in the world's leading financial centre.

The news will please Mike Crockart, MP for Edinburgh West who has literally never shut up about this since he was elected. If I'd had a pound for every time he's asked about this in the House of Commons, I'd be able to keep the whole of Liberal Youth Scotland in drink for the Conference weekend.

This is a great triumph for Liberal Democrats within the Coalition, ensuring that £3 billion pounds to start with is there to finance green projects which will put our economy on a much more sustainable footing. It means that energy saving, renewable or skills developing measures which can't get the finance to get them off the ground right now may well come to fruition. It's really good news and shows how the UK Coalition Government is leading the way in ensuring that Scotland can develop a role as a renewables power house.

Mike Crockart had, probably, too many words to say about this, but in the spirit of celebration, I'll let you have them all here:

“The Business Secretary has today made the right decision and made it for the right reasons. For the past 16 months I have been arguing that Edinburgh is the best choice for the location of the Green Investment Bank because of its strength in depth in both financial services and green technology. It is this co-location that will make the bank a success and make Edinburgh a European centre of excellence for green investment.
 “Throughout that time I have been championing Edinburgh as the natural home of the Green Investment Bank. The city’s bid team put together an exceptional case for our capital and today’s announcement reflects that.
“Edinburgh’s case was supported by a group which started with the Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce but grew to encompass more than 25 partners representing the best from the public and private sectors. Edinburgh's team has set the agenda from the start and helped to clarify the criteria for siting the ground-breaking institution.
“The bank will play a vital role in our transition to a low-carbon economy and will provide a welcome boost to the city’s economy, bringing with it an initial £3 billion to invest in green projects as well as the creation of 50-70 jobs by 2015.
“The investment bank is another way in which the Liberal Democrats in Government are working to rebalance our economy; making it more sustainable whilst also meeting green credentials. 
"In his speech on the future of Scotland in Edinburgh the Prime Minister described Scotland as a 'pioneering country’. Today the UK Government has demonstrated its belief in Edinburgh as a pioneer of the green revolution and a vital part of the UK’s drive towards a sustainable and green future.”

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