East Kilbride Central North candidate, Anne Maggs, has welcomed statistics showing unemployment in Scotland fell by 12,000 in the three months to February – with the Scottish jobless rate at 8.1 per cent, below the UK average of 8.3%.  The Office for National Statistics (ONS) report also shows employment increased by 17,000 over the same period.

Anne said:

“Despite positive indications in the Scottish economy, there must be no room for complacency and now the UK Government must stump the money from the list of Shovel Ready projects provided by the SNP Government.

“Scotland now has lower unemployment, higher employment, and lower economic inactivity than the UK as a whole with more people finding employment and a fall in the jobless rate.

“Action taken by the SNP Government – including increased capital expenditure and improved access to finance for medium and small sized businesses – must not be derailed by spending cuts from Westminster.

“Every £100m of investment in capital projects would support an estimated 1400 jobs, such as the Raith Interchange upgrade, bringing jobs and apprenticeships to South Lanarkshire.

“An SNP Administration at South Lanarkshire Council would use the capital budget to drive jobs and enterprise and support SMEs by increasing participation in procurement.

“The Scottish Government is doing what it can with its limited resources but the Shovel Ready money is vital to create more jobs and push the recovery forward.

First Minister Alex Salmond said that while there were now positive indications in the Scottish economy, there could be no room for complacency – and he has written again to Prime Minister David Cameron, calling for an increase in capital spending to support the list of 300 million pound “shovel-ready” projects across Scotland that Mr Salmond sent to Mr Cameron on 2 March.  The Prime Minister asked for such a list at the meeting between the First Minister and Prime Minister in Edinburgh in February.

First Minister Alex Salmond said:

“What is needed to now to propel recovery forward is an injection of increased capital spending – which is why I am writing again to David Cameron with the list of 300 million pounds of ‘shovel-ready’ projects across Scotland to boost growth and support thousands of jobs.

“As today’s figures demonstrate, there are positive indications in the Scottish economy but more capital spending is vital to keep pushing jobs and recovery forward.

“With the full economic and financial powers of independence we could do even more – but in the meantime the UK Government should be helping, rather than hindering, the process of recovery.”





Full details of labour market statistics:


The list of “shovel-ready” projects sent to the Prime Minister on 2 March



Full details of GDP statistics can be found here:


Full details of export statistics can be found here:



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