Annual Report Chief Executive's Introduction
I am pleased to introduce the Transport Scotland Annual Report and Accounts for 2012-13.
Our focus throughout the year has remained firmly on fulfilling our role in delivering national transport projects, policies and programmes on behalf of Scottish Ministers. Our updated Corporate Plan was published in June 2012 and provided a clear direction and focus for the three year period to 2015. This is built around the Scottish Government's Purpose of increasing sustainable economic growth, and the Report this year highlights the major contribution we continue to make in delivering our key priorities and commitments.
The report will strike a chord with the range of stakeholders we work with throughout Scotland. There has been excellent progress with high profile projects such as the Queensferry Crossing, a new rail link to the Borders, and major improvements taken forward for trunk road routes, while we have continued to support transport services for communities throughout Scotland including our vital links to the islands by air and sea. The Minister's announcement in June 2012 of our plans for rail including £5 billion investment in infrastructure and franchised services by the end of the decade was a significant milestone, drawing from wide consultation and engagement across Scotland.
The publication of the final Ferries Plan in December 2012, the establishment of Scottish Canals for July 2012, and the expansion of our international air links to Dubai and Istanbul were notable highlights. In July 2012 Ministers unveiled the programme for the £3 billion duelling of the A9 between Perth and Inverness, and we relish the challenge and engagement involved in taking forward these initiatives.
A key working principle is developing innovative approaches and technology across our activities. The maintenance of the trunk road network remains a vital role, and the year saw the establishment of our new Traffic Control Centre at South Queensferry and Contact and Education Centre for the Queensferry Crossing. We also see innovative approaches to environmental issues across all of our programmes and plans, as we develop a strategic approach to emissions abatement and take positive steps in Carbon Management, active travel and support and safety across all of the transport networks continues to be a priority.
The common thread across our activities is a commitment, as an organisation, to deliver Ministers' policy objectives for transport, openly and transparently, and using valuable public resources wisely as set out in the Accounts. As an Agency within Scottish Government we have an established place and identity within the public sector landscape in Scotland. The achievements in this year continue a valued record of progress since our establishment in 2006 and expanded roles from 2010.
This is a reflection of a clear direction and purpose, but more importantly the contribution of our staff and advisers. I pay tribute to all colleagues involved for their dedicated and committed approach to the organisation, and for the significant achievements set out in this report.