Industrial Policies

Oral Answers to Questions — Scotland – in the House of Commons at 2:30 pm on 7th September 2004.

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Photo of Mr Tam Dalyell Mr Tam Dalyell Labour, Linlithgow 2:30 pm, 7th September 2004

What conclusions he has drawn in relation to Government policies for industry from his visit to Sun Microsystems at Linlithgow on Tuesday 31 August.

Photo of Alistair Darling Alistair Darling The Secretary of State for Scotland, The Secretary of State for Transport

I was very pleased that my hon. Friend was able to join me to visit Sun Microsystems last week. Sun's investment in the Linlithgow plant demonstrates that the Government's policies and our management of the economy, allied to the Scottish Executive's enterprise strategy, are making Scotland the right place for such companies to do business.

Photo of Mr Tam Dalyell Mr Tam Dalyell Labour, Linlithgow

How about expeditious freight links?

Photo of Alistair Darling Alistair Darling The Secretary of State for Scotland, The Secretary of State for Transport

My hon. Friend makes a very good—and very short—point. He is right, and that is why the development at Edinburgh airport, which is now a major freight airport in the UK, is important. Companies such as Sun are anxious, however, to have further freight connections, perhaps at Prestwick or in other countries, where heavier goods could be transported to different parts of the world. However, we want to do everything that we possibly can to encourage companies such as Sun, which makes goods that are exported throughout the world, to thrive in Scotland, and we shall continue to do so.