From rebuilding the economy from the devastating impact of the pandemic, to tackling the climate crisis and reskilling our workforce for the jobs of the future, the next Scottish government will face a greater set of challenges than any previous Holyrood administration.
None of these can be met by government alone and as attention turns towards May’s election, the launch of CBI Scotland’s Holyrood manifesto comes with a clear message: now is the time for all political parties to commit to being the party of business and to work with firms to provide bolder, better and fairer solutions to the challenges facing our country.
Three steps set out in manifesto
The manifesto sets out three steps – with thirty key recommendations and dozens of other positive actions – that will move us towards a new partnership for prosperity that helps us respond to the great challenges Scotland faces and ensure everyone can benefit from a strong economy.
- Firstly, that means building Scotland’s economic recovery in partnership with business. Investing in people to give them the skills they need, making the 2020s a decade of delivery on the road to a net zero economy and repurposing and renewing Scotland’s infrastructure for a better-connected future are challenges that cannot be met by either business or government alone.
- The second step is unlocking Scotland’s competitive advantage. From business rates and the planning system, to open data and investing in innovation, firms need a stable and competitive platform to grow – one that sends a clear message that Scotland is an attractive place to invest and do business. Working together, business and government can make Scotland the best place to live and work and re-establish Scotland on the world stage.
- And finally, it’s time to champion the role of business in an economy that works for everyone. Business must continue to show that profit comes with purpose. It is successful and sustainable businesses that underpin our economy and society, provide employment and create prosperity. But the pandemic has shown the value of business to be more than that. Businesses are fundamental to our way of life and people’s jobs are about more than paying the bills – they create social connections, support good mental health and provide a sense of purpose. Politicians across the political spectrum should back that vision by making business a policy partner.
A strong economy that delivers growth and good jobs is the only sustainable way of raising wages, living standards and ultimately securing prosperity for all across Scotland. This election must be about rebuilding Scotland from the devastating impact of the pandemic and it’s time to put the economy at the centre of the political debate in the lead-up to 6 May.
Read the key recommendations and full manifesto