West Lothian's Jobs Task Force was established in June 2018. Promoted by West Lothian Council, the task force is a partnership which includes the UK and Scottish Governments, Scottish Enterprise and West Lothian College.
The key objective of the Jobs Task Force was initially to directly support the creation of over 450 high-value jobs in key sectors by 2021. By December 2021, the partnership has well exceeded its target and supported over 700 new high-value jobs in local firms across sectors including life sciences, technology, engineering and manufacturing.
The Jobs Task Force has made 56 grant awards to West Lothian firms and financial grants have helped secure six firms relocating to West Lothian. Support from the task force is prioritised in our key economic sectors of life sciences, technology, engineering, manufacturing, construction and food & drink. The companies that have received support employ over 1,800 staff and have annual sales of almost £410 million.
Executive councillor for development and transport, Cathy Muldoon said: "The Jobs Task Force has been a major success and has supported firms across West Lothian - Livingston to Linlithgow, Broxburn to Whitburn.
"Creating employment opportunities and supporting local business are key priorities for West Lothian Council and working with our partners we have provided much needed support and assistance to many firms looking to move to West Lothian, or expand and grow their businesses in West Lothian. It's clear that the financial support, via the task force, is vitally important in attracting new investment to the area, which creates new employment and training.
"When the Task Force was first launched, nobody knew that the world was going to encounter the Covid-19 pandemic and, in turn, face the challenges that continue to impact the economy. Fortunately West Lothian was in a good position and had a firm economic footing when the pandemic arrived, in terms of relatively low unemployment and a strong local economy. Whilst the pandemic has undoubtedly had an impact on local business, the existence of the West Lothian Job Task Force has helped many businesses throughout the past two years and it will continue to do so as we move forward."
"West Lothian continues to be a place that retains and attracts successful businesses which provide high value jobs and opportunities for training and growth.
"Our Economic Development team is on hand to support local businesses and I'd encourage any business to contact them to discuss what support packages are available."