Blair’s Strategy Unit brands fishing insignificant
11th August 2003
Government cannot be trusted says Lochhead
SNP Shadow Fishing Minister Mr Richard Lochhead MSP has today (Thursday) slammed the UK government for their total contempt for the Scottish fishing industry, after a leaked document from the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit states that fishing plays an insignificant part in the national economy. Mr Lochhead said:
"This explosive revelation shows that Scotland is in dire straights in the starkest terms because Tony Blair and his advisors cannot be trusted to fight for the future of our fishing industry.
"The SNP has very big concerns about the report which states that it is only fish catching that plays an insignificant role in the national economy instead of the rest of the industry, but the fact is that without fish catching, the rest of the industry will not survive.
"Quite clearly, in the eyes of Downing Street, the Scottish fishing industry is insignificant and worthless but to Scotland the industry is twenty times more vital than to the UK as a whole.
"In the early 1970s, the UK government labelled the Scottish fishing industry ‘expendable’ when they were attempting to join the European common fisheries policy, and 30 years later nothing has changed.”
"This is why full power over fishing policy and European representation must be transferred from London to Scotland."
Contact: Richard Lochhead on 0780 149 9222
SNP Parliamentary Press Office on 0131 348 5684