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Eilidh Whiteford, MP for Banff & Buchan

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Mutualisation Not An Excuse For UK Government To Ditch Responsibility

Monday, 23 May 2011

MP WARNS OVER POSTAL PLAN

Commenting on the publication of the report on the possible mutual structure for the Post Office network published by the UK Government, Banff & Buchan SNP Member of Parliament, Eilidh Whiteford, says that the structure is less important than a guarantee from the UK Government of future business, which they have so far refused to give.

Without that guarantee the SNP believe that the Post Office Network will be at significant risk and there will a major lack of incentive for much needed new investment.

Commenting, the SNP’s Eilidh Whiteford said:

“The idea of a mutual Post Office network is not in itself a bad one, certainly far better than any straight privatisation, but the absolutely vital point for the future of the network is whether it will continue to receive business from the Royal Mail delivery system after privatisation.

“Throughout this process the SNP has been pressing the UK Government to guarantee the post office network the business from a privatised mail delivery company for a lengthy period, giving it a stable environment for investment.

“The Tories and Lib-Dems continue to refuse to grant such an agreement with the result it is still far from certain what level of business will be available for sub post offices should privatisation of the delivery system proceed. This leads to huge uncertainty and lack of confidence for investment.

“There remains a real danger that the Post Office network, so vital in rural areas like Banff & Buchan, could be devastated by the privatisation of the delivery service. The UK Government must not be allowed to use mutualisation of the network as an excuse to ditch that responsibility.”

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