Results 101–120 of 8707 for speaker:Fergus Ewing

Scottish Parliament: A96 (Dualling) (30 Sep 2021)

Fergus Ewing: The traffic congestion that is experienced by residents in Nairn can be as bad as that which is experienced in Glasgow or Edinburgh, except that in Nairn there is only one road that citizens can use through the town—the A96. During the tourism season, delays of up to an hour can be experienced in getting from one end of the town to the other. Will the minister approve and commence...

Scottish Parliament: Health and Social Care (14 Sep 2021)

Fergus Ewing: Will the cabinet secretary give way?

Scottish Parliament: Health and Social Care (14 Sep 2021)

Fergus Ewing: It is very generous of the cabinet secretary to give way—I thank him. The cabinet secretary has given details of the heavy burden on NHS services throughout the country, which is perhaps largely a result of the Covid pandemic. Plainly, with the 26th United Nations climate change conference of the parties—COP26—close on us, we will see the arrival in Scotland, with a focus on Glasgow, of...

Scottish Parliament: Economic Recovery (2 Jun 2021)

Fergus Ewing: It is 14 years since I last spoke from the back benches, so members will forgive me if I am a bit rusty. I thank Willie Rennie for the first two sentences of his speech. However, in the latter part of his speech—that is, the rest of it—I am afraid that he was about as close to the real facts of the situation as the famous ski jumper Eddie the Eagle was to the medal rostrum at the winter...

Scottish Parliament: Economic Recovery (2 Jun 2021)

Fergus Ewing: Well, okay.

Scottish Parliament: Economic Recovery (2 Jun 2021)

Fergus Ewing: I believe that there will be more jobs in time, but that will happen only because we prevented the closure and loss of the smelter. Had it closed, it would never have reopened. Had Dalzell not been kept in business by Mr Gupta and the GFG, those jobs would have been gone forever, and not just those jobs, as Mr Rennie knows—or should know—but all the supply-chain jobs as well. We are...

Scottish Parliament: Oaths and Affirmations (13 May 2021)

Fergus Ewing: took the oath.

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: My statement concerns the administration of Greensill Capital UK Ltd and its implications for businesses in Scotland. At the outset, I emphasise that the subject matter concerns sensitive commercial affairs, so I will be careful in my remarks and in answers to members’ questions, in order to avoid saying anything that might breach commercial confidences or cause harm. I hope that members,...

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: I can assure Mr Fraser that continued operation of the smelter and the steelworks are foremost in our objectives. I made that absolutely clear when I met trade union representatives on Monday, when we had an extremely useful discussion. In that discussion, they shared with me their view that the workforce in both plants are optimistic and confident about the future ability of the plants to...

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: I thank Monica Lennon for her question—she asked several questions, in fact. I can say that GFG Alliance is seeking to undertake a refinancing. That is a sensitive commercial matter and we need to be careful not to prejudice or undermine the process. I stress that we will do everything in our power to assist the steel and aluminium businesses and support their highly skilled workers. Back...

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: In my opening statement, I went over the number of jobs that have been provided. Those jobs are valuable and I hope that the Liberal Democrats support that—they certainly do locally in Lochaber. I am pleased that we have received assurances on the safeguarding of 165 jobs and the creation of 44 new jobs at Lochaber. I am also pleased that the company has assured us that it has invested more...

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: I am not quite sure that I caught all that, but the company’s plans for expanding activities at Lochaber are in the public domain; I can share more information on that with Mr Finnie. Those plans, rather than involving the automotive sector and a wheels factory, now involve the billets market, which is broader, I think, and offers real opportunities for job creation. They also include plans...

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: Like Clare Adamson’s family, many families in the centre of Scotland have the steel industry very close to their hearts and many people have seen their sons and, indeed, daughters work in the plant. That is a story that we wish to continue, particularly as we explore low-carbon opportunities. I believe that the workers at the plant want that positive story to be told and their hard work to...

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: My officials and I were closely involved in detailed work when we renegotiated the original plan that was approved by the Finance and Constitution Committee, in order to alter the business plan and move away from the model that was reliant on the automotive sector, for reasons that I described earlier, towards more profitable opportunities. We also had professional advice on those plans...

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: The one clear reason why we took the approach that we did in offering support only to businesses with plans for long-term operations of the Lochaber businesses, including the smelter, was that if we had not done that, the outcome might have been that whereas the hydro asset might have found a purchaser, the smelter would not, and the last smelter in Britain would have shut. That was what...

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: I do not think that it is correct to say that I washed my hands of responsibility. I understand, from the company, that there were substantial discussions with community interests, including community councils, and that those took place over a long period. There were also quite detailed discussions about one particular aspect or project that took place. The company has advised us that there...

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: In my statement, I set out the information that I thought it correct to share with Parliament, and the annual figure repayments vary. The agreement that we reached, and the guarantee that we granted, was, as Mr Mason says, explained and presented to the finance committee, for its approval, as a contingent liability. At that time, the Scottish ministers had to present all proposals to grant...

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: As would be expected, at the time of the original transaction, a whole range of due diligence was undertaken. It was conducted by employing leading firms and experts in the various primary aspects that we had to check in the transaction, so I am confident that we approached it and carried out due diligence appropriately. The cross-party finance committee played its required scrutiny role, and...

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: My ministerial colleagues have carried out work on the long-term future of the steel industry, and we believe that there is such a long-term future. I alluded to the fact that the market and prices in steel are very satisfactory and higher than they have been for some considerable time. As we emerge from Covid, there is optimism within the sector, so the task that we face now is to overcome...

Scottish Parliament: Greensill Capital UK (Administration) (24 Mar 2021)

Fergus Ewing: Yes, I do, and yes, I will. I am extremely grateful for Mr Stewart’s continued support. I think that that might be David Stewart’s last contribution in Parliament. He and I have known each other since, I think, 1990, when we first stood against each other. His presence here will be sorely missed. He is one of a small band of politicians who have been councillors, MPs and MSPs, and, over a...


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