South Scotland MSP and Labour Spokesperson for Infrastructure, Transport and Connectivity Colin Smyth has said that an announcement on funding for the Ayrshire Growth Deal is long overdue.

It comes as Secretary of State for Scotland, David Mundell, is expected to make a financial commitment of around £100 million for the Ayrshire Growth Deal.

Colin Smyth MSP said, “This funding announcement by the UK Government for the Ayrshire Growth Deal is long overdue. The three Ayrshire local authorities have invested significant resources into this deal to unlock economic growth for the entire area.

While I welcome all funding being put into growing the local economy I am concerned that £100 million is only a third of the ask from the local authorities. It has been made clear in the development of the Ayrshire Growth Deal that £1.2 billion of private investment could be unlocked if £300 million of public sector investment was made available.

The Scottish Government must now make clear how much they will invest in the Ayrshire Growth Deal. However, both the Scottish and UK Government’s must not expect Ayrshire’s three local authorities to contribute vast sums of investment at a time when they are being faced with extreme cuts to their budgets.”

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