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[Un-allotted Half Day] — Fuel Costs

Part of Opposition Day – in the House of Commons at 6:15 pm on 7th February 2011.

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Photo of Eilidh Whiteford Eilidh Whiteford Shadow SNP Spokesperson (International Development), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Women), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Work and Pensions), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Agriculture and Fisheries) 6:15 pm, 7th February 2011

I have listened with great interest to this afternoon's debate. I intend to limit my remarks to aspects of it that relate most to the area that I represent. That part of rural Aberdeenshire and Banffshire has no railway stations and very limited public transport options-there are far fewer bus services than hon. Members will find in urban areas. This is therefore an urgent issue not just for individuals, but for businesses in remote and rural areas, and I am glad that Members on both sides of the House take it seriously.

It almost goes without saying that people who live in the more remote and rural parts of Scotland, Wales and other parts of the UK have to travel further to access the most basic amenities, whether post offices, shops, schools, places of work or doctor's surgeries. Inevitably, they incur extra costs in doing so, yet as other hon. Members have pointed out, people in rural and remote areas pay higher prices. In parts of my constituency, they pay £1.36 per litre for fuel. That might not be quite as high a price as is paid in some of the island communities, but it is nevertheless well above the average.