THE consortium behind the bid for a Forth Green Freeport unveiled its vision for the major enhancement of the Rosyth port and waterfront areas within Fife.

A potential £1 billion of investment could be delivered within Rosyth and Burntisland – with the creation of an estimated 7,000 new direct green jobs – if the business case from Babcock International, Forth Ports Group and the Scarborough Muir Group is approved.

This is set to come from the development of nearly 150 hectares of land at Rosyth, identified as part of the prospective Forth Green Freeport.

Working with Fife Council – and other bid partners including City of Edinburgh Council, Falkirk Council, Edinburgh Airport and INEOS – the Forth Green Freeport will deliver high quality green manufacturing and logistics jobs, repurposing existing assets and driving new skills to accelerate a just transition to a low carbon future.

Newly created Green Freeport jobs at Rosyth would mainly serve activity such as shipping logistics, advanced manufacturing and shipbuilding, in addition to the assembly of offshore wind and low carbon energy generation.

Developments at the Port of Rosyth will enhance Scotland’s international connectivity and export capacity through a brand new freight hub.

The Forth Green Freeport bid proposes specific tax and customs sites within Fife at Rosyth and Burntisland. Other identified locations and infrastructure across South West Fife and Mid Fife are also set to benefit and form a key part of the Forth Green Freeport bid.

The proposal was submitted to the UK and Scottish governments for assessment in June and seeks to re-industrialise Scotland, create large scale economic development, boost local supply chain growth, skills development and create a world-class manufacturing cluster.

The bid has the potential to generate 50,000 new green jobs across Scotland and act as a catalyst for new green technologies and renewable energy manufacturing, unlocking £6 billion of private and public investment for the country.

CEO of Forth Ports Group, Charles Hammond OBE, said: “Scotland needs to boost its international connectivity and our plan for new freight hub and rail terminals will offer manufacturers and shippers a fast-track route to global and European markets directly via the North Sea.

"Our plan builds upon the recent DFDS announcement, which aims to see the return of a direct daily freight ferry route to northern Europe from Scotland, while offering an alternative to the congested Dover Straits and reducing dependence on road transport, while boosting trade.”

The vision for Rosyth also builds on the recent success at Babcock’s Rosyth facilities.

David Lockwood, CEO of Babcock International Group PLC, said the Green Freeport would enhance the multi-million pound investment in infrastructure, digitisation and skills at their facility over the last decade and underpin their large-scale manufacturing capabilities.

He continued: "It would also complement our work with partners through the Arrol Gibb Innovation Campus – a global centre of excellence for large-scale advanced manufacturing, offering access to the latest industrial techniques and technology, innovation advice and skills development.”

Ronnie Muir, Director of Scarborough Muir Group, said Scotland was "on the cusp" of a green revolution, with offshore wind providing the catalyst for new, high-quality manufacturing and engineering employment along the Firth energy coast.

“Queensferry One is one of Scotland’s largest and best-connected strategic employment sites," he added. "Located on the Firth of Forth, the 120-acre development site provides an established hub for businesses in the green energy sector looking to scale their operations or improve supply chain efficiencies across the Central Scotland and beyond.

“Working with the Rosyth’s industrial cluster and innovation partners, Queensferry One will play a major role in delivering the green energy and low carbon logistics objectives of the Forth Green Freeport, while boosting the nation’s trading position.”

Dunfermline and West Fife MP Douglas Chapman said the vision was "exciting and timely".

He added: “If successful, their proposals could lead to an explosion of innovation and growth across West Fife, its surrounding areas, and indeed all of Scotland too.

“The bid is an opportunity to create high-skilled, well-paid and sustainable ‘green’ jobs, bring in additional, substantial investment, and with the development of a ferry hub at Rosyth, enhance our direct trade links with Europe.

“The timing for this couldn’t be better, as West Fife is now home to Scotland’s eighth city, and we have several new high schools under construction and a new Fife College Campus on the way too – so we are on the way to becoming Scotland’s smartest and best-skilled city.

“To put it simply, the area is growing and developing, and adding a thriving green freeport to the mix really would be a welcome boost to our growing economy.”