By Councillor John Alexander, Chair of the Scottish Cities Alliance

TODAY sees the launch of the Scottish Cities Alliance’s latest Investment Prospectus, a document with the power to do much for our economy.

The Alliance is the unique collaboration of Scotland’s seven cities and the Scottish Government working together to promote our cities’ economic potential around the world. This Investment Prospectus is a collection of the cities’ top investment propositions, which will be used to promote Scotland’s cities on an international stage, highlighting the billions of pounds worth of potential investments we have to investors, intermediaries and key decision makers.

By working together, gathering the sectoral strengths of each city, we are able to compete on a world stage and to bring every city – Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Inverness, Perth and Stirling – to the attention of international investors. Collaboration lies at the core of the alliance’s ethos and work with other key public sector partners such as Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Development International, private sector partners, such as Robertson and Arup, both speakers at today’s launch, ensures that we have a strong positive story for investment to take to the Scottish, UK and international investor audience.

To date, the collective approach of the Alliance has helped to bring in more than £125 million to the Scottish economy and with a wide range of additional investments worth billions of pounds showcased in the new Investment Prospectus, there are even greater opportunities to attract further investment into our modern and vibrant cities to ensure their continued economic success.

Scotland has much to shout about – we have world-class resources such as one of the most highly educated workforces in Europe, competitive tax policies, a reputation for innovation and a strong international brand. In their latest Scotland Attractiveness Survey, EY found that Scotland is second only to London as the most popular part of the UK to invest in. We are building on this solid foundation, and working with the private sector, closely examining investor trends in order that we remain ahead of the curve, and by working as a collective we have been able to leverage match funding in a range of projects which make us internationally competitive and our cities sustainable and future-proof. Our Smart Cities Programme, which is investing £24m in new technologies will ensure our cities’ continued attractiveness for investment and talent, creating new opportunities for business, enhancing the quality of life for the people living there.

According to the Centre for Cities’ What Investors Want report, pro-growth city leadership is one of the top characteristics investors prioritise when looking at a city. When you look at the significant achievements and strengths of the cities in this Investment Prospectus you begin to get a feel of just how much Scotland’s cities have to offer investors. This is clear evidence of our pro-growth leadership approach in action. Projects in the Investment Prospectus such as Dundee Waterfront have the power to transform cities through the millions or billions in investment they bring, which, when this is all realised, will mean hundreds or thousands of jobs and increased prosperity to the public. The range of great investment opportunities in this Investment Prospectus has the power to revitalise all our cities, attracting the investment vital to making them and Scotland great destinations for investment and also for those who live, work and visit.

Today’s launch is taking place at V&A Dundee, which itself demonstrates, in bricks and mortar, what vision, belief and a drive for change through leadership can bring.

Councillor John Alexander is Chair of the Scottish Cities Alliance and leader of Dundee City Council.