Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Scotland – in the House of Commons at 11:30 am on 25th May 2004.

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Photo of Alistair Darling Alistair Darling The Secretary of State for Scotland, The Secretary of State for Transport 11:30 am, 25th May 2004

The hon. Gentleman is not very good, is he? I suggest that he reflect on this simple fact: since 1997, unemployment in his constituency has fallen by 50 per cent. Why is that? It is because the economy has been growing year on year. That is why more people are in work. This Government, during the past few years, have introduced a range of measures that are helping Scottish business. As I have said to the hon. Gentleman, our biggest single achievement has been to create an economy, and the right environment, in which small businesses can grow. All that would be wrecked if the Tory party got back in, because of the policies that it is advocating—not just because it would slash public expenditure but because of the instability that would be created by the policies that the shadow Chancellor is promoting.