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Eilidh Whiteford, MP for Banff & Buchan

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WHITEFORD SECURES COMMONS TIME FOR DEBATE ON FISHERIES

Saturday, 27 November 2010

Banff & Buchan MP and SNP Westminster Fisheries Spokesperson Dr Eilidh Whiteford has secured time in the House of Commons for a debate on fisheries after meeting with the Backbench Business Committee, who agreed to the MP’s request to allocate time for a debate.

The move by Dr Whiteford was necessary after it emerged that no Government time was to be made available for a fisheries debate, unlike in previous years.

Dr Whiteford, along with MPs Andrew George (Lib Dem: St Ives), Margaret Ritchie (SDLP: South Down), Dr Sarah Woolaston (Con: Totnes) and Therese Coffey (Con: Suffolk Coastal), took the case for a Fisheries Debate to the Backbench Business Committee and persuaded Members that time be made available, and will now be held on Thursday 2 December in Westminster Hall, contrary to some incorrect reports that a debate had already been secured for December 9th.

Commenting, Dr Whiteford said:

I am delighted that the Backbench Business Committee has been persuaded of the importance of allowing time to debate the future of an industry that is of huge importance to our coastal communities and the wider Scottish economy.

“Fisheries is subject to one of the highest degrees of political management of any industry and it is therefore vital that MPs representing fishing communities have the opportunity to put forward their views to the Minister ahead of the Fisheries Council.

“This situation simply underlines why we need effective Scottish representation at Europe’s top table. I have been in discussions with Scottish fishing representatives in advance of the debate and I will endeavour to make the case for the Scottish fishing industry on Thursday.”

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