Opposition Day — [15th Allotted Day] — Trade, Exports, Innovation and Productivity

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:01 pm on 13th January 2016.

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Photo of Stewart Hosie Stewart Hosie SNP Deputy Leader, Shadow SNP Westminster Group Leader (Economy), Deputy Leader, Scottish National Party 1:01 pm, 13th January 2016

I agree with the hon. Gentleman’s assessment that we need more innovation, exports, technology and investment, all of which I will come on to. The Government and I can have a debate about precisely what they are doing, but his assertion that being part of the UK will allow such things in bigger quantities is tenuous at best and probably not confirmed by the reality.

To return to the Chancellor’s “march of the makers” speech, if those words appeared far-fetched when he first said them, they appear rather shallow and empty in the light of the reality of what is going on. In that regard, during the last Parliament—this is linked to the intervention about investment—another Tory-led Government, in a press release about business investment, a balanced and sustainable economy and all the matters we are discussing, boasted about investment in the UK Green Investment Bank. We supported that institution. We believed that it would deliver support for innovation and growth in a new industry, and indeed it has done so. Incredibly, however, it has been systematically undermined by this Government, while many of the changes they have announced since are undermining the commitment to the green economy generally.