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MPAS publishes 'Priorities for Scotland'

L-R: Alan MacKenzie, chair of MPA Scotland; Kate Forbes MSP; Jon Prichard, MPA chief executive officer; and Alan Doak, director of MPA Scotland
L-R: Alan MacKenzie, chair of MPA Scotland; Kate Forbes MSP; Jon Prichard, MPA chief executive officer; and Alan Doak, director of MPA Scotland

New document sets out how Scotland’s growth and net-zero plans need mineral products

SCOTLAND’s economic development and drive for decarbonization depend on domestically available mineral products, according to a new document which sets out a series of policy recommendations for the Scottish Government.

Launched at a special event in Edinburgh on 29 February 2024, where guest speaker was former Cabinet Secretary for Finance and the Economy Kate Forbes MSP, the new document, ‘Priorities for Scotland’, has been published by the Mineral Products Association Scotland (MPAS).

 

Attending the event were policy makers, officials, and representatives of companies that produce heavy-side building materials such as aggregates, concrete, and asphalt – around 30 million tonnes of these materials are manufactured in Scotland every year, the biggest flow of materials in the Scottish economy.

Essential for renewable energy infrastructure, transport networks, schools, hospitals, flood defences, urban regeneration, and housing, the mineral products sector has a key role in supporting sustainable growth in Scotland. In the new publication MPAS proposes a series of policy recommendations that will enable the industry to fully play its part.

Among the key issues highlighted in Priorities for Scotland are:

  • Avoiding unintended consequences of devolving the Aggregates Tax

  • Extending the Industrial Energy Transformation Fund, removing funding windows

  • Ensuring adequate reserves of aggregates to meet future material needs

  • Planning the infrastructure for material flows and manufacturing facilities

  • Recognizing the industry’s unmatched track record on biodiversity gain.

MPAS is also calling on the Scottish Government to establish a collaborative Scottish Minerals Forum to help deliver the best for the industry and the best for Scotland.

Alan MacKenzie, chair of MPA Scotland, said: ‘It was great to hear Kate’s views on many of the challenges and opportunities we face in Scotland, from the huge potential of floating offshore wind to what we can do to deliver employment and career opportunities, more biodiversity net gain, and a globally competitive Scottish economy. I really hope this document lands well with Scottish Government and beyond, as an offer of partnership to help each other deliver for Scotland.’

Alan Doak, director of MPA Scotland, said: ‘The detailed work we have done on the proposed Scottish Aggregates Tax in dialogue with Revenue Scotland and the Scottish Government shows the value of working together in Scotland’s interests. We are very keen to establish a Scottish Minerals Forum to bring together all the key players on the future of our industry, with industry, the Scottish Government, local government, and other key partners to ensure that we can ensure a supply of essential materials, environmental benefit, and delivery of key infrastructure.’

 

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