The Scottish government has published its ‘vision’ for becoming a world-leading ‘blue economy’, reports Paul Scott.
The document, ‘Blue Economy Vision for Scotland’, recognises that Scotland’s seas and waters have ‘a key role to play in contributing to the nation’s future economic prosperity, especially in remote, rural and island communities – and that a healthy marine environment is essential to supporting this ambition’.
The ‘blue economy’ is defined by the government as being the ‘sustainable use of ocean resources for economic growth, improved livelihoods and jobs, while preserving the health of marine and coastal ecosystems’.
Rural affairs secretary Mairi Gougeon said: “Together, we can achieve an ambitious transformation of the value of Scotland’s seas as we move from ‘blue economy’ theory into delivery, driving forward innovative solutions to deliver bold and ambitious change, helping to tackle the twin crises of nature and climate change, bringing real benefits to people and communities throughout Scotland and globally.”
The document, which also recognises fish and seafood from Scotland as being ‘renowned globally for its quality’, identifies six outcomes as ‘focal points’ to ensure that ‘the marine environment supports ecosystem health, improved livelihoods, economic prosperity, social inclusion and wellbeing’.
The government says that the outcomes also recognise ‘the ambition for Scotland to be a global leader in providing healthy, high-quality and sustainably harvested blue foods’.
It says that the publication of the document marks the start of the work to deliver ‘a collaborative approach for marine-related activity in Scotland’.
“Scotland’s seas and coasts support vital jobs across our economy, especially in coastal and island communities, providing many goods and services as well as contributing to our overall wellbeing,” said Mairi Gougeon.
“There is potential for an ambitious and inclusive ‘blue recovery’ for people and nature, and the ‘blue economy’ vision starts us on that journey.”
The full document is available here.
This story was taken from the latest issue of Fishing News. For more up-to-date and in-depth reports on the UK and Irish commercial fishing sector, subscribe to Fishing News here or buy the latest single issue for just £3.30 here.