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DMA meets with Scottish Minister for Public Finance & Digital Economy, Kate Forbes MSP

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Today, business representatives from across all sectors met with Minister for Public Finance and Digital Economy, Kate Forbes MSP, to discuss yesterday's budget by the Government in the Scottish Parliament.

Hosted by CBI Scotland, Public Affairs Manager Michael Sturrock represented the DMA's members and the wider digital, data and marketing industry to feed in views about what business would need from the Scottish Government going forward.

Atop everyone's list was the skills shortage in the Scottish and wider UK economy. Many industries are struggling from a shallow talent pool and many jobs go unfilled in the Scottish economy. A focus on up-skilling, attracting talent and working to increase diversity in employment is needed. The budget contains several proposals to deal with these issues and all businesses gave assurances that they would work with the Scottish Government on implementing the policy proposals in this area and continue to work on industry-specific solutions, too.

There was also concern about the future of the UK and Scottish regulatory landscape. Due to its cross-border nature, the digital and data industry is more exposed to changing regulatory environments, and Brexit and the prospect of Scottish independence could add further change. Good communication from government to business will be key in ensuring businesses are prepared for any upcoming changes. Ms Forbes gave assurances that making Scotland the best place to do business - particularly in the digital and data economy - would be a priority and that work would be done and investment made where necessary to help businesses through.

The DMA looks forward to working with the Scottish Government going forward on making Scotland the 'data capital of Europe' and increasing diversity and wellbeing in the workforce.

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