Skip to content

New Scottish government must rebuild economy by rethinking infrastructure policy

17 May 2021

ICE Scotland has called upon the newly-elected government to prioritise infrastructure when it develops plans to stimulate the economy and aid post-Covid recovery. 

New Scottish government must rebuild economy by rethinking infrastructure policy

Infrastructure must be at heart of the Scottish government’s strategic decision-making.

That is the message ICE Scotland is sending all newly elected MSPs as it aims to influence policy-making post-election.

To kick-start conversations with key decision-makers, the organisation has produced an ‘Infrastructure Priorities for Government’ document based on four areas of action:

  • Resiliency: auditing Scotland’s infrastructure to ensure it is fit for purpose, now and in the future.
  • Procurement: changing procurement policy so smaller contractors are not disadvantaged and the supply chain is supported, particularly at a local level.
  • Strategy: developing policies on infrastructure planning, investment and prioritisation must be for the long-term, not short-term political cycles.
  • Professionalism: utilising the expertise of ICE Scotland members in planning, designing, building, maintaining and managing our infrastructure needs to be recognised in policy development, delivery and procurement.

Full benefit to economy

ICE Scotland director Hannah Smith said historic under-investment in Scotland’s infrastructure means portions of it are deteriorating and failing to realise their full benefit to the economy.

“Good infrastructure can improve our places, productivity, health and wellbeing – poor or inefficient infrastructure can lead to economic and societal disruption, as well as, in extreme cases, risks to health and safety.

"If the new Scottish government is to successfully rebuild the economy, it must re-think infrastructure policy. The priority areas of resiliency, procurement, strategic thinking and utilising professionalism are where action must start.

“We have an opportunity to transform civil society, governance, economics and manufacturing with renewed focus on our infrastructure, but to do that we must think about infrastructure as a system with new finance models.”

Download Infrastructure Priorities for Government.

  • Gordon Brown, communications lead at ICE