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Marine Fund Scotland now open for 2024-25 applications

By Alan Beresford

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Banffshire and Buchan Coast MSP Karen Adam.
Banffshire and Buchan Coast MSP Karen Adam.

APPLICATIONS are now open for Marine Fund Scotland 2024-25.

Addressing the Fisheries Management Scotland conference, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Land Reform and Islands Mairi Gougeon confirmed that £14 million will be made available through the fund in 2024-25 to help deliver Scotland’s Blue Economy Vision, which sets out plans to transform the way the marine environment is used and how Scotland’s ‘blue’ resources are managed.

The funding is available to a wide range of eligible individuals, businesses, organisations and communities to deliver projects that contribute to an innovative and sustainable marine economy, support coastal communities, and contribute to Scotland’s net zero ambitions.

Last year, a total of 91 projects were awarded funding, with grants ranging from under £1000 up to £1.6 million. These projects included the modernising of seafood processing facilities to reduce energy consumption and improve efficiency; harbour improvements such as community clean ups and marine litter prevention; improvements to safety training and on-board safety for sea fishers; and marine research and innovation to protect our iconic wild salmon.

Welcoming news that the fund has reopened Banffshire and Buchan Coast MSP Karen Adam said: “ I welcome the opening of the Marine Fund Scotland application process for 2024/2025.

“This scheme, now in its fourth year, has seen significant investment in the Banffshire and Buchan Coast constituency. It has led to improved infrastructure and helped our world-class seafood producers adapt and survive in a challenging post-Brexit market.

“I encourage my constituents engaged in the blue economy to think big and submit an application. My office is always available to offer support and advice on form filling.”

Mairi Gougeon, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Land Reform and Islands. Picture: James Mackenzie
Mairi Gougeon, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Land Reform and Islands. Picture: James Mackenzie

Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Land Reform and Islands Mairi Gougeon said: “The Marine Fund Scotland supports a wide range of exciting and innovative projects delivering on our Blue Economy Vision.

“Congratulations to those organisations and individuals who have already made successful applications – it’s fantastic to see that Scottish Government funding is playing an important role in helping our marine industries to evolve and flourish. I am looking forward to seeing the types of projects that apply for funding in this fourth year of the fund.

“However, while the fund is critical in delivering on one of our three core government missions – opportunity: building a fair, green and growing economy – we no longer have sufficient funding to support longer term investment.

“Marine funding in Scotland continues to be short-changed by the UK government so, as well as ensuring the full allocation for the Marine Fund Scotland is maintained in future years, we will keep pressing the UK government to uphold their commitment to replace lost EU funding in full, so that we can continue supporting innovative projects in our marine sectors and coastal communities in the future.”

Visit https://www.gov.scot/publications/marine-fund-scotland-2024-25-general-guidance-notes/ for more details on how to apply.

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