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Capital Spend, Focus And Skills Moving Overseas As High Taxes Hit North Sea ConfidenceThumbnail for article : Capital Spend, Focus And Skills Moving Overseas As High Taxes Hit North Sea Confidence
A report published by Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce points up worries that investment is now moving to other parts of the world.   Government needs to urgently create the conditions which will encourage investment in the energy sector or risk Aberdeen losing its global energy capital status, according to a new report.  
Geospatial Commission Recommends Creation Of New Taskforce For Land Use
New report sets out how integrating data, science and innovation can help make better use of UK land.   New Geospatial Commission report recommends establishment of new Land Use Analysis Taskforce.  
Key Priorities For International Growth - International Scotland Report Sets Out Key Economic Growth Priorities For Scottish Government
International Scotland, an initiative led by law firm CMS and the Fraser of Allander Institute, has launched a new report setting out key business priorities to be addressed to ensure the nation's economy can thrive.   Focused on providing a platform to promote economic growth, International Scotland was launched last year with an initial report setting out the opportunities for growth across key sectors such as sustainable tourism, food & drink, life sciences and renewable energy.  
Regeneration Capital Grant Fund Open For Applications In The Highlands
The Highland Council is now accepting expressions of interest for the Regeneration Capital Grant Fund for 2024-2025.   The Regeneration Capital Grant Fund is delivered in partnership with the Scottish Government and COSLA.  
High Demand And Rising Prices Continue To Limit Access To Scotland's Valuable Rural LandThumbnail for article : High Demand And Rising Prices Continue To Limit Access To Scotland's Valuable Rural Land
Scotland's increasingly valuable rural land is only available to a limited few as high demand from forestry, natural capital investment, and corporate estate buyers continues to drive high prices, according to a new report by the Scottish Land Commission.   The Rural Land Market Insights Report 2023 underlines the need for action to ensure that communities, family farms, local businesses, and individuals are not priced out of the rural land market due to sustained high land prices driven by large-scale forestry and natural capital investments.  
Housing Standards For Agricultural Holdings To Be Aligned With The Private Rented Sector
The Tenant Farming Commissioner, Bob McIntosh, explores upcoming changes to the standards for agricultural housing in his latest blog.   Scottish Ministers have clearly signalled that they would like a whole-sector approach to standards for rented housing - aligning not only the private and social rented sectors but also housing included in farm tenancies.  
New UHI Course Responds To Climate Change And Transition To Net Zero DemandsThumbnail for article : New UHI Course Responds To Climate Change And Transition To Net Zero Demands
A new course developed by UHI North Highland, UHI Outer Hebrides and UHI West Highland aims to equip graduates with the skills and knowledge to enter the fast-growing and dynamic green economy industry.   Starting this September, the HNC Wildlife and Conservation Management course will focus on important activities such as ecology and ecosystems, species and habitat monitoring, conservation, land management and sustainable wildlife management.  
Sutherland Spaceport Proposed Byelaws
The Highland Council will promote, on behalf of Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), proposed byelaws to restrict public access rights during launches at the Sutherland SpacePort by Tongue.   The proposed byelaws will be made available for public inspection and a 12-week public consultation will take place with key stakeholders.  
Sutherland-based GMG Energy Switches On Its Huge Solar ArrayThumbnail for article : Sutherland-based GMG Energy Switches On Its Huge Solar Array
Sutherland-based GMG Energy switched on its huge solar array to provide energy for its burgeoning local business.   A sustainable timber products specialist which contributes significantly to the circular economy in the Highlands and the Northern Isles has become even more energy efficient after putting a massive solar array on the roof of its production facility into operation.  
Construction Begins At Sutherland, The Uk Mainland's First Vertical Launch SpaceportThumbnail for article : Construction Begins At Sutherland, The Uk Mainland's First Vertical Launch Spaceport
£14.6 Million Public Investment Package Confirmed for Carbon-Neutral Spaceport Project.   Orbex has announced that construction has begun at Sutherland Spaceport (formerly known as Space Hub Sutherland) in Scotland, making this the first vertical launch spaceport to be built on the UK mainland.  
Grant Funding Support Helps Highland Businesses Remain BuoyantThumbnail for article : Grant Funding Support Helps Highland Businesses Remain Buoyant
During the last year, over 2000 Highland businesses have been supported to start-up and grow by Highland Council.  Supported by the Council's business development service, businesses have secured start-up and growth finance, and have accessed advisory support through the Council's Business Gateway service.  
Highland Councillors Approve Next Steps For Three Council Owner Airfields
Members at today's (4 May 2023) Economy and Infrastructure Committee reviewed and approved the next steps for the future of Highland Council's three airfields.   The report highlights that current resource committed to the operation and maintenance of the airfields at Ashaig in Skye, Dornoch and Plockton is not sufficient to meet all of the maintenance liabilities and legal requirements.  
Highland Councillors Approves Employability Services Programme That Aims To Tackle Poverty And Barriers To Work
Members of The Highland Council's Economy and Infrastructure Committee were today (Thursday 4 May) given an overview of the employability services delivered by the Council and its partners, and approved priorities for the coming year.   Members heard that during 2022-23 The Council's Employability team, together with public, private and third-sector partners delivered a suite of activity across Highland, supporting 680 people of whom 257 gained employment as a result.  
Highland Council Agree More Cash For Roads - £7.7m - Sutherland RoadsThumbnail for article : Highland Council Agree More Cash For Roads - £7.7m - Sutherland Roads
Highland Council today agreed to allocate a further £7.7 million to the roads capital budget taking the total to over £20million.   For the £7.7m strategic allocation, the Service was asked to produce a further list of road surface treatment schemes, utilising engineering judgement and local knowledge to determine which projects were to be included.  
£2m Grant Fund Launched For Greening Businesses
Businesses in the Highlands and Islands operating in tourism, creative industries and food and drink processing, can now apply for grants of up to £150,000 to help them reduce the environmental impacts of their operations.   The £2m Green Grants Fund, launched today (Thursday 4 May) by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), is also available to social enterprises in any sector.  
Scottish Government Backs Down On Imposing Marine Protected Areas
Over the last two days, Highlands and Islands Labour MSP Rhoda Grant has made impassioned pleas against the SNP's roughshod approach to imposing Highly Protected Marine Areas on coastal communities.   Even a few SNP members spoke against the government legislation being imposed.  
Letting Property In Highland - Badenoch And Strathspey Short Term Let Control Area Begins June 2023
The decisions today at Highland Council for Ward 20 may soon affect other areas and so anyone renting property may wish to keep up to date if already letting or planning to do so.   On Thursday 4 May 2023 Highland Council's Economy and Infrastructure Committee meeting, Members agreed to the commencement of the Badenoch and Strathspey (Ward 20) Short Term Let Control Area (STLCA) and a formally established date of the 18 June 2023.  
MSP Calls For Rethink On Postponement Of Naver Bridge ReplacementThumbnail for article : MSP Calls For Rethink On Postponement Of Naver Bridge Replacement
Highlands and Islands Labour MSP, Rhoda Grant, has called on Highland Council to rethink the recent decision to defer the replacement of the 140 year old Naver Bridge in north Sutherland.   Mrs Grant has been contacted about the concerns locally surrounding the safety of the current bridge with additional fears that if it is allowed to deteriorate further, any potential closure would adversely affect communities who would face using an alternative route which would be both time consuming and costly for local residents.  
Flow Country Green Finance Initiative Begins First Steps And ConsultationsThumbnail for article : Flow Country Green Finance Initiative Begins First Steps And Consultations
Members of the Flow Country partnership are at the early stages of creating a Green Finance Initiative, looking at ways the peatlands can provide financial benefits to local communities.   Flow Country partnership members are hosting a series of drop-in sessions and are inviting people to join them to discuss green finance and peatland restoration.  
£698.6k Worth Of Funding Bids Approved In Sutherland
Sutherland Council Members have approved £698.6k worth of funding bids aimed at supporting economic regeneration and sustainable development across the area.   Communities were invited to apply for Community Regeneration Funding, an umbrella term for accessible funding streams which comprise of the Highland Coastal Communities Fund and the Place Based Investment Programme.