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CASE Approvals List - November 2005
The following are funds approved up to the last day of the month.   Please note that the sums relate to approvals, not payments.  
The Scottish Co-investment Fund
The Scottish Co-investment Fund (SCF) recently benefited from a £500,000 approval by the Highlands and Islands Partnership Programme (HIPP), which administers European funding in the Highlands and Islands.   The SCF is a market driven, highly innovative fund aimed at substantially increasing the risk capital available and therefore the capacity for investment by private sector investors in small, ambitious growth businesses in Scotland (companies with less than 250 employees and net assets of less than £16 million).  
Caithness Cows Supply Milk For New Highland Blue CheeseThumbnail for article : Caithness Cows Supply Milk For New Highland Blue Cheese
A new soft blue cheese Highland Blue, specially developed by Tain cheese-maker Rory Stone for the North Highland Initiative's Mey Selections brand, is set to become a national festive favourite following a Gold medal-winning launch at the recent Cheltenham Cheese Festival.   The flavour and quality of the new soft blue cheese, described as: 'Tangy and long; a soft rich blue with creamy notes and a mellow aftertaste', has now attracted the attention of buyers from food retail giant Sainsbury who have launched it on their delicatessen counters in 23 Sainsbury stores in time for the festive season.  
Poultry Keepers - SAC Meetings About Avian Flu Protection
NORTH OF SCOTLAND MEETINGS: AVIAN FLU Meetings organised by SAC to raise awareness among poultry keepers of what they can do to protect their birds and themselves from avian influenza are set to take place as follows - INVERNESSIRE: 19/12/05, Thistle Hotel, Inverness at 7.30pm.   CAITHNESS: 20/12/05, Park Hotel, Thurso at 8.30pm These are the last of a series of eight meetings which SAC has held throughout Scotland, on behalf of SEERAD.  
EU Prepares For A Year-long Campaign To Protect Young Workers
An EU-wide campaign will start next year to address the safety of young people at work as according to European statistics they run a 50% higher risk of work accidents than other workers.   A 16-year-old worker's legs were broken less than two hours into his first day at work as he fell from the footplate of an 18-ton refuse lorry.  
Dti Can Cut Red Tape By £1 Billion - Can You Help Do More?
Trade & Industry Secretary Alan Johnson today published details of DTI's developing simplification plan and set out how the Department will deliver over £1 billion of regulatory savings by 2010.   The plan will help DTI deliver a new 25% target for reducing administrative burdens as announced by the Prime Minister at the CBI conference today.  
Scotland's Lorry Operators Suffer From High Fuel Duty and Unfair Competition
Lorry operators in Scotland say that the Government's high fuel duty strategy, coupled with the increasing operation of foreign lorries in the UK, is causing serious problems for the Scottish transport industry.   Members of the Freight Transport Association's Scottish Freight Council, meeting at the end of October, were concerned that plans for Lorry Road User Charging (LRUC), scrapped by Secretary of State for Transport Alistair Darling in July, had not been replaced with any alternative strategy.  
Unemployment Digest For October 2005
The October 2005 unemployment figures were released on 16th November 2005.  During the month, September 2005 to October 2005, the number of people claiming unemployment benefit in Great Britain fell by 0.6%, from 842,433 to 837,100 (5,333 claimants).  
Training For Potential Local Food Producers
The Highlands and Islands Local Food Network (HILFN) is on the look-out for trainee food producers to help expand the availability of locally grown fruit and vegetables.   HILFN is planning to run a one-year programme to provide in-depth training to help small agricultural producers in the Highlands and Islands establish successful new businesses based on the supply of fresh horticultural produce to local customers.  
Bosses Risk Being Left In The Lurch By Job-hopping Employees
Scottish Businesses Struggling to Hold on to Staff.   More than three-quarters of the Scottish workforce (78%) know or suspect that colleagues are on the lookout for a new job, according to new research.  
CASE Approvals List - October 2005
The following are funds approved up to the last day of the month.   Please note that the sums relate to approvals, not payments.  
Full Steam Ahead For New Ironing ServiceThumbnail for article : Full Steam Ahead For New Ironing Service
A new Caithness business aims to offer a very welcome alternative for those tired of hours spent at the ironing board.   Janet Crossley and Lorna Gunn from Watten have started ‘Press On’, which will offer a complete ironing service, including collection and delivery, throughout Caithness.  
Good News As Caithness Firm Gets Contract At Dounreay
A £2.5 million contract has been awarded to M M Miller (Wick) Ltd to construct the containment building needed to safely remove the last of the radioactive breeder elements from the Dounreay Fast Reactor.   The contract has been let by ALSTEC Ltd on behalf of an alliance of companies working with UKAEA on behalf of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority to remove the breeder from the sphere.  
Youth Challenge 2006 Launched
The hunt has begun to find the Highlands and Islands' answer to Richard Branson.   The ICT Hothouse Youth Challenge 2006 is looking for young entrepreneurs with bright ideas.  
CASE Approvals List - September 2005
The following are funds approved up to the last day of the month.   Please note that the sums relate to approvals, not payments.  
Highland £1 Billion Project A Step CloserThumbnail for article : Highland £1 Billion Project A Step Closer
The findings of an independent economic impact assessment of the proposed Forscot project have been published.   The report examines the impacts on employment and income associated with the proposal to build a £1 billion state-of-the-art integrated pulp mill, paper mill and renewable energy generation plant, together with a sawmill that will be owned and operated by a leading UK sawn goods company, at Invergordon in the north-east of Scotland.  
CASE Approvals List - August 2005
The following are funds approved up to the last day of the month.   Please note that the sums relate to approvals, not payments.  
Calling Young Northern Chefs
Scotland's first Scottish Food Scholarship embarks on search for new culinary talent.   Young chefs across Scotland will be encouraged to develop their culinary skills and talents next year at the launch of Scotland's first Scottish Food Scholarship 2006.  
Site Repairs and Updates
Just completed are the repairs and updates that have been outstanding since our recent server move.   Due to upgrade of the hardware and software that is used to host our site, many features (especially photgraphs) were unavailable.  
Does Your Caithness or Sutherland Business Deserve A Queens Award?
Midnight on 31 October 2005 is the deadline for companies to apply for the ultimate business accolade - The Queen's Award for Enterprise, for outstanding achievement in international trade, innovation and sustainable development.   And for individuals it is also the closing date for nominations for the new Queen's Award for Enterprise Promotion, which will reward those inspirational people who encourage enterprise skills and attitudes in others.