The developers behind a multi-million pound plan to build a privately-backed major film studio in Scotland have expressed their frustration at the Scottish Government for the "non-decision" over its planning consent.

PSL Land wants to build a £200m international film studios on the outskirts of Edinburgh, at Straiton in Midlothian, but Government ministers have not yet made a decision on the plan, despite receiving a planning report on the matter before Christmas.

The team behind the bid, which includes special effects expert John Richardson, and experienced film producer Jeremy Pelzer, among others, said that after three years of planning negotiations and nearly £1m in costs, it appears to them that Scotland is not "open for business."

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PSL has now questioned whether the Scottish Government, which received a report and recommendations from an independent planning reporter on the proposal on 22 December 2016, is "supportive" of the film industry.

The candid statement comes as the organisation representing Scotland's film makers have angrily criticised the Government's "total lack of transparency" over the workings of its group established to bring a major international film studio to Scotland.

The Association of Film and TV Practitioners in Scotland (AFPTS) attempted to find out more about the workings of the group set up by the government to set up a major film studio, the Film Studio Delivery Group, which was established four years ago.

A request for information under the Freedom of Information legislation, however, led to frustration and dismay, first with a lengthy delay in receiving documents about the groups business, including minutes of meetings, and finally with the extensively redacted documents it received.

The documents show little information of forward movement with either the Pentland plan or other studio plans.

In response to the FOI request results, a statement from PSL Land Ltd said: "Now into three years of planning negotiations and nearly £1m in costs to date, a project which will deliver a £200 million investment and 1600 jobs in Scotland with no state aid, requires examination of the ongoing length of the planning process.

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"First and foremost a world class film & TV studio, the development will provide an absolute guarantee that Scotland will be elevated to its long-overdue position amongst leading international creative nations.

"The supporting elements of the development - including a national Film Academy and green energy source with a commitment from SSE as the project’s energy provider - will be built to the highest environmental regulations and provide the robust and future-proof business model financially supporting the studio throughout any quieter shooting periods. 

"Responding to international film industry demand, as well as a desperate national need for a new-build facility of this scale and vision, the opportunity currently heading towards a third month of Government ministers non-decision is causing investors to doubt that Scotland is open for business.

"Also whether the Scottish Government are supportive of the indigenous screen industry - despite the fact that this studio alone would serve the Scottish economy and employment significantly better than the present North Sea oil revenues."

The plan is opposed by the farmer, James Telfer, who currently lives and works on the land in question, and other local residents.

Although there are moves to extend the Wardpark Studios in Cumbernauld, the Pentlands plan remains the biggest film studio plan currently on the table for Scotland.

A statement from the AFPTS said: "We are deeply concerned by the total lack of transparency and non-delivery from the Film Studio Delivery Group (FSDG), set up in 2013 with the single purpose of delivering a Scottish Film Studio.

"Why has it taken a full month and five days over the statutory FOI period to disclose almost completely redacted meeting notes , which should have been official minutes in the public domain?

"Why is anything regarding the Pentland Film Studio redacted when it requires no public funding, Creative Scotland are not involved in any way and the FSDG is not part of any Ministerial planning decision?"

It added: "Why is no-one and no agency accountable for this ongoing travesty?"

The AFPTS represents more than 1700 producers, directors and technicians in the film and television industry.

A Scottish Government spokesman said that in this case, the Scottish Government is considering a planning application and it would be inappropriate to disclose this information through an FOI request.

He added: "Government officials only received the Reporters submission on the Pentland’s proposal at the end of December.

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"This is a highly complex planning application for a mixed-use development of which a film studio is only one part, and Ministers are currently giving full and proper consideration to it.

"There are many factors to consider that can affect timelines and it would be misleading to suggest an indicative date for decision.

"Every effort is being made to issue the decision as soon as possible."

In 2014/15, the public sector invested an unprecedented £24.1 million in support for the screen sector, and Film and TV producers spent an record £52.7m shooting in Scotland.