Why we are here


Phase 2 of the Enterprise and Skills Review confirmed ministers would establish a new South of Scotland Enterprise Agency to address the economic challenges of the area, driving inclusive growth.

The Programme for Government confirmed legislation would be introduced into Parliament later in 2018 which, assuming Parliamentary support, ensures that the new statutory body will begin its formal legislative operation from 1 April 2020.

The initial, high level aims for the new Agency are:

  1. to drive the economy forward with growth that creates opportunities for all, where the benefits of increased prosperity are shared
  2. to sustain and grow communities so that people thrive in the places where they live and work
  3. to capitalise on people and resources of the South, developing the skills and making the most of assets to address exclusion and assist growth

Role of the South of Scotland Economic Partnership

The South of Scotland Economic Partnership has been established to respond to the economic needs and opportunities of the South of Scotland in advance of the establishment of the new Agency. The Partnership will lay the foundations for the Agency and will ensure that the area benefits from a new approach to economic development as soon as possible with a clearly prioritised work plan.

The Partnership is chaired by Professor Russel Griggs OBE, with its day to day activity coordinated by Rob Dickson.

The Partnership brings together the private, third and further and higher education sectors, as well as the seven key public sector organisations supporting economic development in the South of Scotland.

View all the members of the partnership

Partnership Activity
The Partnership will:

  1. develop and deliver a clear and prioritised work programme, aligning existing activity, driving progress and piloting new approaches to benefit the South
  2. influence the design of the new agency – offering views on options for its structure and functions, assessing what has worked and engaging with stakeholders to ensure its responsive to and informed by the needs of the area
  3. deliver a strong programme of engagement with stakeholders across the South of Scotland, including the private sector to ensure that they influence the work programme and can inform the proposals for the new agency

In the Scottish Government's 2018-19 budget, the Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Constitution set out £10 million to drive forward inclusive growth and support communities across the South of Scotland. These resources, additional to those already used by partners in the South of Scotland, will support the work of the Partnership.  Find out about funding.