Scotland the natural choice for Green Investment Bank

Orkney and Shetland MP Alistair Carmichael has today again supported calls for the headquarters of the UK government’s new Green Investment Bank (GIB) to be located in Scotland. Mr Carmichael, who had previously described Edinburgh as the ‘natural choice’ for the GIB, was commenting after the Business Secretary Vince Cable outlined progress towards the launch of the new bank in the House of Commons yesterday.

Mr Carmichael has been working with Scottish Secretary Michael Moore to make the case for bringing the bank to Scotland. Supporters of this move argue that the strength of the renewable energy industry in Scotland and easy access to finance make Edinburgh the best location for the headquarters of the new bank.

Speaking in the chamber yesterday, Vince Cable praised the efforts of the Edinburgh bid team for the high level of professionalism they have shown in support of their application.

Commenting, Mr Carmichael said:

‘In the Northern Isles we have a better understanding than most of the importance of providing green industries with the support they need to grow. Renewable energy has come to play a vital role in our local economy. The new Green Investment Bank will boost investment in the sector, helping to create the sustainable jobs we need.

‘Edinburgh has the range and depth of expertise in financial services to give the GIB a real credibility in the market. Importantly, it is also located close enough to the burgeoning Scottish renewable sector to be easily accessible for the many companies who would benefit from additional financial support.

‘I know that the Scottish Secretary has been pushing the case for Edinburgh strongly within Cabinet and this was one of the issues he discussed with Willie Rennie MSP, the new leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats, when he visited London earlier this week. There is now consensus amongst business groups, universities and politicians of all parties that this is something that would be good for Edinburgh and good for Scotland.

‘With access to finance, markets and a strong tradition of innovation in our green industries, I believe that Scotland really is the natural choice for the base for the new Green Investment Bank.’