3 Nov 2018
The SNP has ‘lost touch’ with the north-east of Scotland, interim Scottish Conservative leader Jackson Carlaw will say this weekend.
Mr Carlaw is one of several speakers at the Scottish Conservative party’s annual North East Conference on Saturday.
The event in Westhill will be attended by five Scottish Conservative MPs representing north-east constituencies and five MSPs – as well as councillors from the ruling administrations of both Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire councils.
In his speech, Mr Carlaw, who is standing in for Ruth Davidson while the party leader is on maternity leave, will say that this week’s Budget was further proof of the Scottish Conservatives delivering for the north-east.
The Chancellor announced support for the oil and gas, whisky and fishing sectors following lobbying from Scottish Conservative MPs.
Mr Carlaw will say: “This week has seen more proof that the Scottish Conservatives delivering for the north-east.
“We lobbied hard to deliver a freeze on whisky duty and fuel – two massive issues of concern for this region.
“We called for the Chancellor to deliver stability for the oil and gas sector.
“And our Scottish MPs have again made it clear: when it comes to Brexit, we will support our fishing industry to the hilt.
“We lobbied. The Government acted. The north-east of Scotland will benefit as a result.
“The reaction from the SNP to all this has been frankly bizarre. Indeed, bordering on petulant.
“Despite the fact that Oil and Gas UK welcomed the measures in the Budget, the SNP claimed it delivered “nothing” for the north-east.
“Despite the fact that they themselves lobbied for a freeze in whisky duty, Nicola Sturgeon and Derek MacKay still haven’t been able to bring themselves to welcome it.
“And on fishing, their big plan is for us to stay in the CFP.
“It all points to one conclusion: the SNP has simply lost touch with the north-east.
“Whatever else you may have thought of them, politicians like Alex Salmond and Angus Robertson at least knew their patch.
“By contrast, when it comes to the concerns of people and businesses the North East, Nicola Sturgeon has been posted missing.
“Her only bright idea being to force skilled workers here to pay an extra £1000 a year in tax compared to people working in other parts of the UK.
“The SNP has given up on the North East of Scotland. The Scottish Conservatives are now the party of the North East.”