FIFE councillors have backed a bid which could result in a Green Freeport being created at Rosyth.

Members of the cabinet committee were asked to endorse and approve involvement in the plans which, if selected, would see the creation of a freeport offering tax breaks and low tariffs to businesses.

Forth Ports hope their bid, which encompasses 550 hectares across three key ports – Grangemouth, Leith and Rosyth – as well as Edinburgh Airport and industrial facilities and logistics centres on both sides of the river, will be chosen as one of two special economic zones north of the border.

They say the selection has the potential to create 50,000 jobs and "attract billions of investment".

Pamela Stevenson, Fife Council service manager for economic development, business and employability, told councillors it was hoped an announcement would be made around mid-October.

Dunfermline South councillor James Calder said he was excited about the plans.

“It has got the potential there for both real economic boom for Fife but particularly for the West Fife area with Rosyth,” he added.

Cllr Altany Craik expressed reservations about the plans but said he would wait for further information if the bid was successful.

“The devil of this will be in the detail and we don’t have it yet and are still waiting on a decision. We may not get it,” he said.

“Deregulation zones are not a choice I would necessarily make. If it comes to pass, there are many signs it will make a huge difference in unlocking sites.

“If benefits apply across the whole of Fife, I am prepared to suck it and see and give it my support as far as it goes just now and wait and see the outcome in its details.”

The bid has also been backed this week by Fife Chamber of Commerce along with chambers in Edinburgh and Forth Valley.

In joint letters sent to the UK and Scottish governments, the leaders of the three chambers described the bid as Scotland’s best opportunity to deliver a just transition to net zero, attract £6 billion of inward investment and build significant international trade and export capability.

Alan Mitchell, chief executive of Fife Chamber of Commerce, said: “By 2030, the ScotWind revolution has the potential to create up to £30 billion in additional investment and revenue from the North Sea.

"The Forth Green Freeport will dramatically drive up UK-produced manufactured content by enhancing strategic sites along the Forth Estuary to ensure that the skills base and innovation assets anchor as many as possible of the 25,000 new offshore wind jobs locally.

"The green skills initiatives are a key component in the delivery cycle and will support SMEs to grow their role in complex supply chains and attract new people to tomorrow’s green growth industries.”