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Agribusiness News April 2023

Posted: Monday, 03 April 2023

Welcome to the April edition of Agribusiness News.  If you prefer to download this document click the download button.

N e w s  i n  b r i e f

New First Minister, new cabinet

March has been an eventful month in Scottish politics, with Nicola Sturgeon stepping down as First Minister after nearly 9 years in the role, and Humza Yousaf being announced to step into the role. Yousef promises to deliver on poverty, public services and a fairer, green economy, and his appointment is seen as a positive move for continuing the coalition with the Scottish Greens, with agenda with strong focus on climate change and maximising Scotland’s natural capital.

With regards to rural, Yousaf has promised investment in rural infrastructure and transport, and into a rural housing plan to purchase or long lease housing for key workers and others in rural areas in need of affordable housing. He also vows to support proposals to allow EU migrant workers to work under a rural visa pilot scheme, to tackle post-Brexit shortages in labour in the agriculture and hospitality sectors.

A new cabinet was appointed this week, with Mairi Gougeon remaining as Rural Affairs, Land Reform & Islands secretary, following Kate Forbes’ turning down of the position. Mairi McAllan has been appointed as Net Zero and Just Transition minister, moving on from her position as Minister for Environment, Biodiversity and Land Reform. All in all, the cabinet has seen quite a reshuffle, with a number of senior ministers moving on, and five of the new cabinet under the age of 40.

The new cabinet inherits a relatively new budget, announced on the 15th December, with the annual budget increasing by £637 million in cash terms, or £223 million in “real” terms, compared to Budget 2022-23. Any changes as to how that budget will be channelled remains to be seen.

Next month:

  • On-farm circular economy
  • Arable outlook

This month’s editor: Anna Sellars

Agribusiness News April Cover