Delivering a New Deal for Business

Date Posted: 19 Oct, 2023

-A long-term commitment to partnership-

Priority actions to deepen and strengthen co-operation between the Scottish Government and business have been unveiled.

A new implementation plan details how recommendations from the New Deal for Business Group will be taken forward over the next 18 months to improve policy preparation and delivery and build a wellbeing economy.

Actions include a forum to oversee the impact of regulations on industry and a full review of how government policy is developed to ensure businesses are consulted at all stages – particularly when new regulation is a potential outcome. Work will also start immediately on helping more parents and carers to get back into work.

Other measures include:
• keeping Non-Domestic Rates reforms under review to ensure they support businesses and communities
• developing new ways to assess the impact of regulations on business
• ensuring the right business voices are involved in policy development
• seeking views on health and work, flexible working and just transition plans from across the business sector
• outlining and measuring how business contributes to a wellbeing economy
• assessing the type of support businesses are seeking to help government better understand their needs

Wellbeing Economy Secretary Neil Gray (pictured) said:

“The New Deal for Business presents a new and exciting long-term commitment to partnership, to create the conditions where business feels empowered to invest, to innovate and to provide good jobs.

“By ensuring an open and honest dialogue between business and government we can provide certainty and consistency for business across Scotland, from small high street firms to the largest multinational companies.

“I am grateful for the commitment shown by business to the New Deal and to group members for developing the recommendations which are now agreed actions. Only by working together can we turn the dial on business-government relations and deliver a wellbeing economy, creating the best possible place for business, people and planet.”

Dr Poonam Malik, Head of Investments at the University of Strathclyde, who co-chairs the group with Mr Gray, said:

“Listening actively to business and working in meaningful partnership on common goals will reap rewards and grow our economy ambitiously for the benefit of all of Scotland.

“Having government and business in sync with each other, to deliver growth for our nation with a culture of collaboration – being open and inclusive, with innovative and creative thinking – will overcome the main challenges and break down barriers to high productivity, bringing investment and creating high-quality jobs.

“I thank Group members for all their hard work and commitment to get to this point, and for their continued support to keep up the momentum and remain motivated to see this Plan deliver with action.”


The New Deal for Business Group (NDBG) has drawn upon the expertise of business leaders and representatives from a range of organisations to help government work more closely with industry. It looked at improvements around five key areas – regulation of business, the Non-Domestic Rates system, sharing data, aligning policy with business needs, and encouraging business to follow wellbeing economy principles.

The NDBG was established following publication of the First Minister’s Policy Prospectus to develop a high-quality relationship between government and business and other partners by July 2025, which is key to delivery of the National Strategy for Economic Transformation.

Scottish Chambers of Commerce Welcomes Publication of New Deal for Business Implementation Plan

Commenting on the publication of the New Deal for Business implementation plan, Dr Liz Cameron CBE, said:

“After many months of constructive engagement, we now have a practical plan to implement to improve the relationship between business and government.

“Business will be looking for ambitious pro-growth policies which reduce the cost of doing business and help us to grow, create jobs, and invest.

“It is now time for actions to back up the intent if we are to tackle the challenges facing business and the people that power them.”

The Plan can be downloaded below.


New Deal for Business Group Implementation Plan

pdf / 607.77 KB