A massive funding boost to help bring thousands of jobs to Falkirk and Grangemouth has finally given the green light.
Falkirk Council now has approval for its £67 million Tax Incremental Funding (TIF) scheme which is expected to unlock £413 million in private investment.
Estimates are it could bring around 6000 jobs and hundreds of apprenticeships.
Under TIF, the council will fund infrastructure by borrowing against future business rate income that should be produced by the regeneration and development that will follow.
The three phase, 25-year plan includes improving M9 motorway links to established industrial areas and opening up 400,000 square metres of business space.
There is also funding earmarked to contribute to major flood defences to protect the port and refinery at Grangemouth.
Making the announcement this morning at Grangemouth Golf Club, Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “We will use every lever at our disposal, within our devolved powers, to boost capital spending and through innovative financing schemes such as TIF, support jobs, apprenticeships and help the Scottish economy.
“The Falkirk TIF will allow dozens of major construction developments across the area to unlock significant economic development and regeneration.”
Councillor Craig Martin, leader of Falkirk Council, said the investment signalled a “new chapter” for the area.
He said: “Key infrastructure development will unlock more opportunities in our key sectors of chemicals, manufacturing and logistics, ensuring these high value, job-creating industries can thrive to benefit the whole of Scotland.”