The terms of the deal commit both the UK Government and Scottish Government to jointly investing up to £250m whilst Aberdeen City Council, Aberdeenshire Council and local partners are committed to investing up to £44m over the next decade.
The 10-year deal paves the way for investment in innovation, internationalisation, digital connectivity and infrastructure across the region.
It is designed to act as a catalyst for economic growth and diversification, with partners announcing that estimates suggest the Aberdeen City Region Deal’s total value could be up to £826m once private sector and other investment is factored in.
UK Government Minister Lord Dunlop and Keith Brown MSP, Cabinet Secretary for the Economy, Jobs and Fair Work, were joined by Aberdeen City Council Leader Councillor Jenny Laing, Aberdeenshire Council Co-Leader Councillor Richard Thomson and Opportunity North East Chairman Sir Ian Wood to sign the landmark document.
The Aberdeen City Region Deal encompasses a number of projects. It will support the Oil and Gas Technology Centre (OGTC), a digital infrastructure fund and the proposed expansion of Aberdeen Harbour. A Bio-Therapeutic Hub for Innovation, Agri-Food and Nutrition Hub for Innovation and a Strategic Transport Appraisal are also part of the programme.
In the first delivery milestone of the deal, the initial tranche of money of £4m has been released for the Oil and Gas Technology Centre.
The partners also estimate the deal has the potential to create an average of 330 new jobs per year in the region, aggregating to 3,300 new net jobs over its 10-year lifespan. It could also generate additional annual tax revenues to the Government of £113m from income tax, national insurance, VAT and oil tax revenues.
The Aberdeen City Region Deal agreement was developed over the last two years as a partnership between the UK Government, Scottish Government, Aberdeen City Council, Aberdeenshire Council, Opportunity North East, Scottish Enterprise and other local partners. It is governed by a Joint Committee made up of representatives from Aberdeen City Council, Aberdeenshire Council and Opportunity North East. For further information visit www.abzdeal.com.
UK Government Minister Lord Dunlop said:
The £250m Aberdeen City Deal will make a huge difference to the region’s economy, helping to boost jobs and prosperity. It is great news that we are signing the deal today, meaning we can get on with driving growth in the economy of north-east Scotland.
A key part of the deal is to support innovation and diversification in the oil and gas industry, which is why the technology centre is so crucial. I am very pleased this week that the UK and Scottish governments have been able to release £4million, the first tranche of money, to start work on the centre.
Business Secretary Greg Clark said:
> The UK government is committed to helping cities build on their strengths and drive local growth.
> The skills and expertise of our workforce in the oil and gas industry are world leading, and Aberdeen is at the heart of that success. The Oil and Gas Technology Centre, which is part of the £250m Aberdeen City Deal, will ensure we enhance our technological edge and keep the UK at the forefront of oil and gas globally.