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Thursday, 18 October, 2001, 13:21 GMT 14:21 UK
Recovery plan targets 5,000 jobs
Motorola plant
Motorola's closure has led to 3,000 job losses
A 25m recovery plan which aims to create 5,000 jobs in West Lothian will be considered by councillors next week.

The three-year programme has been drawn up by the West Lothian Economic Partnership Forum following the closure of the Motorola mobile phone factory outside Bathgate.

The objectives include broadening the local employment base, developing skills and establishing the area as a key location for high technology investment.

Councillor Willie Dunn
Councillor Willie Dunn: "Forefront of new technology"
The Scottish Executive is being asked to invest almost 17m in the regeneration of the area.

Motorola announced in April that it was closing the Bathgate plant with the loss of more than 3,000 jobs.

The Chicago-based company has cut 32,000 jobs, just over 20% of its worldwide workforce, in recent months.

An estimated 1,500 further jobs have been lost in West Lothian due to the downturn in the global electronic industry.

The forum unveiled its proposals for reversing that decline on Thursday.

We firmly believe that this ambitious package will help reinvigorate our local economy and greatly assist local people and businesses in the future

Councillor Willie Dunn
The body includes representatives of Scottish Enterprise, West Lothian Chamber of Commerce, West Lothian College and West Lothian Council.

Economic development spokesman Councillor Willie Dunn said: "We have always seen West Lothian as being at the forefront of new technology jobs in Scotland and some of these measures will help us to further develop that position.

"We firmly believe that this ambitious package will help reinvigorate our local economy and greatly assist local people and businesses in the future."

He said that the council hoped to start implementing the plans by next April.

Executive's promise

Transport infrastructure improvements, business growth and promotional initiatives are among the projects proposed in the report, which will be submitted to the council's enterprise and development committee next week.

Mr Dunn said the council hoped to set up a number of meetings with the Scottish Executive to discuss the proposals.

Ministers are being asked to contribute 16.6m as part of the executive's promise to help the area.

The partners in the forum will come up with the remaining funding, and it is expected that some European cash will also be available.

See also:

18 Oct 01 | Scotland
Motorola staff find new jobs
26 Jun 01 | Scotland
End looms for Motorola staff
14 May 01 | Scotland
End date for Motorola staff
25 Apr 01 | Scotland
10m set aside for Motorola workers
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