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Housing

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 4th December 2013.

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Photo of Chic Brodie Chic Brodie Scottish National Party

Yes. We said that over a period of time, we would build 30,000 houses. [Interruption.] That is what we said we would do.

I mentioned the housing association, but rightly Mary Fee of course includes in her naming of a so-called crisis—at least I hope that she would—a reference to private housing. Alex Johnstone from the Conservatives missed the very point that, in Mary Fee’s expansive critique, there was a not-so-detailed commentary on private housing, or indeed on the private rented sector, which has seen a severe decline and is one of the main components—if not the main component—in building stats, with a consequent effect on the completion figures since 2007-08 that we have heard about.

Mary Fee mentioned the Audit Scotland report on housing from July this year, so let us look at what it says in the round. It states:

“The recession has affected the availability of housing and the sector is now working with constraints on lending, competing and increasing demands on capital resources, and reduced government subsidies.”

Those issues are not controlled from this chamber.

Mary Fee and the Labour Party now need to be honest, and honest with themselves. Who helped to cause the 2008 recession? It was a UK Labour Government that defaulted on imposing the financial regulation that it should have imposed. Who now can liberate lending for mortgages? It is the Westminster Government, although—