A green investment bank intended to attract billions of pounds in funding for new renewables projects will be run from Edinburgh, in a move designed partly to bolster the case against Scottish independence.

Vince CableVince Cable, the business secretary, announced that the new bank, expected to employ between 50 and 70 people, would have its headquarters in Edinburgh, but will also operate a large fundraising office in London to exploit the City’s financial clout and global reach, the Guardian reports.

Cable told the Guardian the two cities had come top of a financial and technical assessment, with Manchester lying third.

But he said the side-effect of splitting it between Edinburgh and London supported the “wider narrative” of binding Scotland into the UK in the run-up to the Scottish independence referendum.

He admitted he expected criticism of the decision to split its operations up, and confirmed that London had by far the strongest case of all the 19 cities studied. But, he added, the UK government was also committed to putting major institutions in other parts of the UK to “rebalance the economy”.

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