Supporting Economic Recovery

Hawick Town Horse

In 2020/21 SOSE supported businesses and organisations across the South of Scotland to navigate the impacts of the economic crisis created by COVID-19 and to anticipate and respond to business issues related to the UK’s exit from the European Union. We provided a range of support and funding to sustain businesses and other organisations in crisis and to protect jobs, as well as to clients looking to adapt and diversify their operations to start the journey to recovery.

The economic impact of COVID-19 on the South of Scotland will continue to be incredibly challenging into 2021 and beyond, with further impacts likely to arise from the UK’s exit from the EU. There will be an ongoing need to protect vulnerable organisations in order to maintain our economy and retain people in work and to help businesses and organisations to prepare for and invest in recovery.

What we will focus on:

  • Understanding and mitigating the ongoing impacts of COVID-19, and EU exit, on our businesses, communities and economy
  • Sustaining as many viable jobs as possible
  • Providing tailored support to help those disproportionally affected by job losses, including women, young people and those in disadvantaged communities, to access alternative employment
  • Supporting communities to recover from COVID-19, encouraging and supporting them to develop sustainable projects that create jobs and aid community wellbeing
  • Communicating opportunities and supporting local businesses to plan for and invest in recovery and growth
  • Supporting entrepreneurs to start new businesses and existing businesses to position themselves to respond to new and emerging opportunities
  • Attracting inward investment and encouraging investment from within the South of Scotland to create new jobs with a focus on creating a just and green recovery
  • Supporting new and innovative approaches and initiatives which will accelerate the realisation of inclusive growth within the region

What we will do:

  • Continue to allocate significant resources to supporting our COVID-19 crisis management and recovery, in parallel to initiating new support and funding that will assist the region to develop and grow for the future
  • Continue to directly and meaningfully engage with as many businesses, communities and other initiatives seeking support as possible, assisting or signposting where we can
  • Invest in critical physical, social and human infrastructure and skills for recovery and future development of our economy, communities and environment
  • Identify employment opportunities in the short to medium term, with a focus on Green Jobs and supporting the Just Transition to Net Zero
  • Develop and deliver an action plan to attract and land Inward Investment, creating jobs and opportunities
  • Supporting entrepreneurs to start new businesses and existing businesses to position themselves to respond to new and emerging opportunities
  • Share learning and best practice on adaptation, diversification and innovation
  • Be bold and open to new models of working and funding to deliver solutions and infrastructure.

What we will do in partnership:

  • Champion the needs of the South of Scotland by contributing intelligence and influencing Government thinking and actions
  • Continue to adopt a Team South of Scotland approach to pool intelligence and coordinate restart and recovery efforts
  • Continue intelligence sharing regarding potential redundancies in the South of Scotland and support appropriate response action including business crisis support and PACE activity
  • Work with the Councils, Business Gateway, Skills Development Scotland, Visit Scotland, Scottish Development International, Industry Bodies and other local and national partners to make the most effective use of the funding and resources available to support economic recovery and create maximum benefit for the South of Scotland
  • Work with partner Enterprise Agencies to share best practice and develop joint activity and ways of working
  • Align our plans and activities with those of the Scottish Government