A North-east MP has condemned the response to a cross-party, pan-North-east approach to the Chancellor of the Exchequer requesting he meet with representatives of the Scottish Cluster – the Acorn CCS Project – as “dismal and inadequate”.
Gordon MP Richard Thomson branded the refusal of the Chancellor to meet with a cross-party group which included the North-east Conservative MPs as well as SNP MPs as “deeply troubling”.
The 6 MPs representing Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire and Moray all put their names to a joint letter to the Chancellor back in July requesting the meeting. The letter was passed to Junior Treasury Minister Alan Mak who responded this week saying he was not in a position to offer a meeting.
Commenting, SNP Shadow Financial Secretary and MP for Gordon, Richard Thomson, said:
“Collectively, North-east MPs put politics aside to ask the Chancellor for a discussion about the strategic importance of Acorn. To end up with a reply from a junior minister claiming they are ‘not in a position’ to offer a meeting, is a thoroughly dismal and inadequate outcome.
“Fortunately, Mr Mak probably won’t be in his position for very much longer. Nevertheless, after so many let-downs by the UK Government over carbon capture in the North-east, this apparent lack of willingness by UK Ministers to engage with MPs – even apparently those from their own party – is deeply concerning.
“There’s no transition to Net Zero without the North-east, and the Acorn project is a crucial piece in that jigsaw.
“I hope that the new Minister – whoever he or she may be – will reverse this snub at the earliest opportunity. The North-east can’t afford to be let down again by a UK Government which only seems interested in our economy when it needs our resources to balance its books.”