A global expert has claimed Aberdeen’s diversification and regeneration is “paying dividends” as it was announced £8.4 billion of public and private investment is due to be delivered to the north-east before 2030.
Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce has produced its third investment tracker in partnership with EY which shows further planned investment following the completion of projects totalling £1.7 billion last year.
These include Press and Journal offices Marishchal Square and the Silver Fin Building in the city centre, Inverurie Medical Centre and the new Kineller Primary School to the west, together with Hywind, the world’s first floating offshore windfarm and Peterhead Port to the north and the Royal Station at Ballater and Dalriada Lodges to the south.
Derek Leith, global oil and gas tax lead and senior partner at EY Aberdeen, said the ongoing investment and nurturing of entrepreneurship was a sign the region’s diversification away from oil and gas was paying off.
He said: “After a particularly challenging couple of years, the renewed strategy of diversification for the north-east economy is beginning to pay dividends.
“With large scale road and rail infrastructure improvements nearing completion, increased investment in digital infrastructure and success stories such as the Oil & Gas Technology Centre, the region is continuing to nurture an environment of innovation and entrepreneurship, ready for growth.
“It is essential that investors and politicians are hearing the right story. This is where the tracker proves to be invaluable.”
Most of the investment in the document, published on the AGCC website, is scheduled for the next three years and includes projects involving transport and infrastructure, office and retail and leisure and culture, as well as health, sport and education.
Chamber chief executive Russell Borthwick said: “Last year’s tracker highlighted a pipeline of around £9 billion of projects and initiatives due for delivery over the next 10 or so years.
“It is a measure of the incredible progress and pace being demonstrated that £1.7 billion of these projects have been delivered over the past 12 months, with many headline schemes due for completion in 2019 and 2020.
“The Aberdeen city region is already a great place to live, work, study, visit, invest and do business but what the tracker shows is that we are not resting on our laurels.
“We are taking the initiative, investing heavily in delivering the infrastructure, regeneration and cultural activity to create a truly 21st century environment, right here, right now.”
Projects included in the Tracker are those which have received planning permission or have funding committed.
Focused on specific, often time-bound investment, it does not include areas where there is large scale investment that is harder to qualify, such as the residential sector.
“Outsiders might know of the north-east as being Europe’s oil capital and with that knowledge make assumptions of this place being industrial and in decline. Nothing could be further from the truth,” added Mr Borthwick.
“This report is part of a concerted effort by our regional partners to share the narrative of an already thriving city region with big ambitions for the future.”