“Census and research information published this week clearly demonstrates the value of migration to rural Scotland,” claims Ariane Burgess, Scottish Green MSP for the Highlands & Islands.
The publication of first results from the 2022 census represents an historic moment for Scotland with the largest population ever recorded by Scotland’s Census of 5.4 million.
An increase of 2.7 % since the previous census in 2011 and also confirms that the growth in Scotland’s population has been driven by migration, with fewer births than deaths registered.
Commenting, Ariane said:
“Our rural communities recognise the need for migration to address the economic challenges posed by an ageing population and that’s one reason why I’ve been calling for the rural visa pilot scheme announced in the Programme for Government.
“Migration is about much more than work and the Census announcement has come at the same time as new research shows that 74% of people in Scotland believe ‘diversity is good for Scotland’ and 61% believe a mix of different people makes an area more enjoyable to live in.
“This is markedly different from attitudes in the rest of the UK and thus makes the continued Westminster blocking of rural visa proposals put forward by the Scottish Government in partnership with local authorities and rural stakeholders like the NFUS all the more frustrating.”