Douglas Ross says Conservatives have ‘more to do’ on fishing industry concerns
Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross has denied that all his party can offer fishermen in the North East is “compensation for their losses” and pledged to “solve the problems” which prevent the export of certain products.
MP Moray launched a campaign of advertising vans in Glasgow on Wednesday, accusing the SNP of ‘looking the other way’ on a range of national policies.
But when asked about his party’s broken promises on the post-Brexit fisheries, Mr Ross denied compensation was what the Tories could offer but admitted more needed to be done to fix the problems In progress.
It comes after figures released last month revealed the devastating impact of Brexit, with UK seafood exports to the EU almost completely wiped out with a blow of £ 700million.
Mr Ross also told reporters that more than 100,000 jobs in the North East’s oil and gas sector would be ‘at risk’ if the Scottish Greens ‘had any influence or power’ over the SNP in the next parliament.
It comes after Scottish Green co-frontman Patrick Harvie called for an end to North Sea oil and gas production within the next decade.
Regarding fishing, Mr Ross said: “I said that we have to compensate for the losses incurred, but that we have to solve the problems which prevent the export of some of our products.
“Now that we’ve come a certain way since January, we’ve come a certain way in terms of opening up some markets or some of the market access that has proven to be problematic, but we still have a long way to go. make.
‘However, in terms of what has been delivered through the deal, what we have is, over the next five years, more and more quota going to Scottish fishermen and, by the end of the five-year period, full rights to who catches what, where and when. “
Mr Ross said this would be “threatened” by the SNP, which wants to join the EU and “return all that quota to the EU that we have successfully taken over since our exit”.
He added: “This should be renegotiated again with the EU under the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), which the SNP says is not ideal.
“I think it is absolutely the worst thing for our fishing communities to be reintegrated into the CFP after having fought for more than four decades to get out of it.
‘Pushed to the edge of the abyss’
However, SNP candidate for Banffshire and the Buchan Coast Karen Adam said Scottish fishing communities’ were paying a heavy price for the litany of broken promises peddled by the Tories and their rotten Brexit deal – and Douglas Ross is guilty as he supported Boris Johnson and voted in favor of his deal ”.
She added: “The measures proposed by the Conservative government are not even a drop in the bucket compared to what is desperately needed to support our fishing industry, with the deal leaving the industry worse off than when we were part of the European Union.
“Our fishing communities – which have been pushed to the brink due to the impact of Covid and Brexit – need real support now, not insulting rhetoric from Douglas Ross trying to to divert attention from the Conservatives’ broken promises.
Boris Johnson no-show
The Scottish Tory leader also blamed Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s absence from the Covid-19 pandemic campaign and his role in overseeing the UK’s vaccination program.
Mr Johnson had previously insisted ‘wild horses won’t keep me away’ but has not made any visits to Scotland since his controversial trip north of the border in January at the height of the pandemic coronavirus.
Mr Ross, who has faced repeated questions about any potential visit, said he and Mr Johnson had kept ‘in the know’ of each other during the campaign.
He added: “The fact that he won’t physically surrender, I think most people understand, is due to the very different circumstances we face in this election due to his downfall during a pandemic.”
A victory away? Boris Johnson will not come to Scotland during the election campaign