RECOVERY from the credit crunch has been slow and laborious, while economic growth over the next few years is forecast as weak.
However, Fife is confident of remaining a prime area in which to invest, despite various challenges facing the development industry.
The Invest in Fife group and its associates, including Fife Council, aim to build on their success over the last half-decade or so in attracting and securing new projects to the Kingdom, in the belief that ‘Fife means business’.
On Thursday, the new £3 million Fife Renewables Innovation Centre, opened in June at the Energy Park in Methil, hosted a Fife Business Week seminar entitled ‘Unlocking Fife’s Potential’, in which delegates heard from various industry sectors about the issues confronting modern businesses.
Robin Presswood, a senior economic development official with Fife Council, said Invest in Fife and its partnership approach were unique and successful, while Fife was a “powerful proposition”.
A good deal of expansion and investment had focused on Methil, with announcements in 2012 by Samsung Heavy Industries, BiFab, and enhancement plans for the Energy Park itself and Methil Docks.
Richard Bedford, Diageo’s operations director in Fife, gave a recap on the drinks giant’s large-scale investments at Cameronbridge, Banbeath and, more recently, Begg Farm in Kirkcaldy.
He later added that any uncertainty or hesitancy over the 2014 referendum on Scottish independence would have no bearing at all on Diageo’s business in Scotland.
A summary of Scottish property and the likelihood of investment was delivered by Mark Robertson of commercial property consultant Ryden.