The latest political news, interviews and debate in Scotland.
Browse content similar to 19/11/2017. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!
Morning everyone, and welcome
to the Sunday Politics.
I'm Sarah Smith.
And this is your guide
to all the big stories that
are shaping politics this weekend,
and a few of the smaller ones too.
Philip Hammond is getting ready
to deliver his latest Budget
on Wednesday and he's not short
of advice - to spend more,
show restraint, even
to stop being an Eyore -
but can he change the direction
of the country and his government?
Conservative Party darling
Jacob Rees-Mogg has
some advice of his own.
He thinks the Chancellor
is being far too gloomy about Brexit
- he joins me live to explain why.
The former Leave campaign leader,
Gisela Stuart, will be here debating
with pro-EU campaigner
Alastair Campbell, after taking
a trip to her native Germany
to speak to businesses
And on Sunday Politics Scotland
today, the Scottish Government saves
BiFab from imminent administration.
But is it enough to secure
manufacturing in the long term?
I'll be asking the Economy
Secretary, Keith Brown.
Also, after a bitter battle,
Richard Leonard becomes
the ninth leader of Scottish Labour
since devolution, but will he be
able to heal the party's wounds?
All that coming up in the programme.
And with me for for all of it,
three journalists who've promised
not to show off like Michael Gove
by using any long economicky words -
although I'm not sure they really
know that many anyway -
it's Tom Newton Dunn,
Gaby Hinsliff and Iain Martin.
Let's take a look at the big
political stories making the news
this Sunday morning,
and as you might expect there's
plenty of speculation
about what might or not might be
in Philip Hammond's Budget.
The Chancellor is promising a big
investment in new technology,
including driverless cars -
which could be on the road by 2021.
He's been interviewed
in the Sunday Times,
where he talks about plans to reach
the target of building
300,000 homes every year,
or the equivalent of a city
the size of Leeds.
That paper speculates that he's
attempting to turn from "fiscal
Phil" into "hopeful Hammond"
as he tries to set out
a vision for the country,
not just a list of numbers.
The Sunday Telegraph thinks that
Mr Hammond is planning to offer
a pay rise to nurses as part
of a bid to take on Labour.
But that hasn't impressed
Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell.
He's spoken to a number of papers
and is calling for an emergency
budget to invest in public services
and help struggling households.
So that's a taste of what you might
hear on Wednesday and Mr Hammond
and Mr McDonnell have both been
appearing this morning
on the Andrew Marr Show.
I think Britain has a very
bright future ahead of it,
and we have to embrace
the opportunities that
a post-Brexit world will offer.
They will be opportunities that
are based on huge change,
huge technological evolution.
It's not always going to be easy,
but the British people have shown
time and time again that we're up
for these challenges.
For many people out there,
this is a depression.
We've had people whose wages
have been cut by 10%.
Nurses, for example.
We've had people who are now...
1.25 million food parcels handed out
in the sixth richest
country in the world.
That's what I call a recession
for large numbers of people.
We will be talking about Labour and
their economic policies in a moment,
but let's start with what we might
expect from the budget. We will talk
to our panel of political observers.
Philip Hammond is under pressure to
set out a bold vision and reset the
government's programme. Can we
No, we can't. We have
heard enough from the Chancellor
across various broadcast and his
article in the Sunday Times. I think
we will not be getting a bold
budget. His precise words short... A
short time ago were a balanced
budget. Some Tory hearts will think.
They desperately want something to
go out and shout about, something to
capture people's imagination, and do
big and bold things, like how on
earth are they going to build those
new 300,000 houses a year? There are
good reasons why he has chosen what
appears to be a pretty staid,
Conservative budget, and that is
that they are probably unable to get
anything bold through Parliament.
His capital is so low among Tory
MPs. If you have a minority
government, it is tricky.
seen ministers on programmes like
this in the last few weeks putting
in the bids for what they would like
spending on, whether it be payment
for nurses or parliament. Would he
struggled to get something radical
through the Commons?
Big ideas cost
money. That's the problem. Bold
ideas are controversial. In some
ways, Tory MPs are asking their
Chancellor to do the impossible.
Government is already doing
something big and bold, which is
Brexit. That has implications for
how much money is available, how
many risks you want to take with
everything else. What is crucial is
that he demonstrates a reputation
for competence. The reputation that
the Conservative government has for
economic competence, that many
people prefer them to Labour on the
issue of economic competence. The
worst thing he could do is come up
with a big, bold idea that
unravelled quickly. What they
absolutely don't want is to come up
with an exciting idea that falls
apart three days after the budget.
He is under pressure from
Brexiteers, who are suspicious of
him. Does he have to offer them
Part of his problem is he
has to offer so many different
people different things. This is
Philip Hammond trying to be and
It is hard to tell
At least in theoretical
terms. His longer-term difficulty is
that, if you look at the economic
cycle, we are getting to a point
where we are probably overdue, if
you put Brexit to one side, overdue
some kind of correction or downturn,
if you look what has happened to
asset prices globally. What will be
worrying for the Treasury is, just
as everyone is saying we should turn
on the taps and build this or that,
we might be at the top of a cycle,
and the Treasury will want to lose
something in the armoury in terms of
probably growing the deficit if
there are economic difficulties in
the next two years, and then there
is Brexit as well.
I think so. Talking to
his friends and colleagues over the
last few days, he had to make a
call, which was precisely how much
can I get away with, with my
political capital being as low as it
is, with the mixed problems he had
at the last budget, and a lot of the
party disliking his approach to
Brexit. He is damned if he is,
damned if he doesn't. Universal
Credit, we are expecting a reduction
in the time it takes to wait,
business rates, affected by high
inflation... I think we will see a
problem fixing budget which will
probably do quite a lot of important
spadework in many areas.
pick up on some of this later in the
Let's speak now to the Conservative
MP Jacob Rees-Mogg, this week
he helpfully launched an alternative
"budget for Brexit" and advised
the Chancellor to be less gloomy
about the consequences
of leaving the EU.
Thank you for joining us. Your
alternative budget is pretty
radical. Almost half corporation
tax, Cap Stamp duty to help the
London market. It seems you are
advocating the opposite from what we
will hear from your Chancellor on
There are two parts to
the proposals I suggested. One is
that we should show that after we
have left the European Union, the UK
is open to the rest of the world. It
is about opening up to the rest of
the world. Secondly, looking at the
modelling that has been done by the
Treasury and some other forecasters,
which has been so comprehensively
wrong. The forecasts made about what
would happen after Brexit have
turned out to be hopelessly false.
The team at Cardiff University have
done some modelling based on the
classical economic principles and
what happens if you move to free
trade that would be very positive
for the economy.
You are predicting
a Brexit dividend of £135 billion,
which sounds fantastic. Why are you
right, and everybody else, including
the Bank of England and the
Institute for Fiscal Studies, why
are they all wrong?
It depends on
the type of modelling. The modelling
that have been done by the Treasury
have been based on gravity models,
which work on the basis of the
nearness of the market and the size
of the economy you are trading with.
These have been wrong in the past.
They predicted that if we joined the
euro, trade would grow by 300%. That
was then revised down to 200%, but
it is fantasyland. The model I am
working on, by Sir Patrick Minford,
who has a record of getting these
things right. He was right about the
exchange rate mechanism, right about
Being right in the past
doesn't mean you are right about the
future. Why do you think the
Treasury will not pick up the same
numbers, if this is so obvious to
I think the Treasury was
humiliated by the errors in its
forecast prior to Brexit, and is
trying to defend its position. The
short-term economic consequences of
a vote to leave was one of the most
dishonest documents to come out of
the Treasury, purely a piece of
political propaganda. They are
wounded by that and sticking to the
same script, rather than looking at
other forecasts and other experts.
You think the governor of the Bank
of England is an enemy of Brexit,
and it sounds like you think the
Treasury is opposed to it. As the
Chancellor fallen under their spell
as well, and been persuaded to be an
enemy of Brexit?
I have admiration
the Chancellor, but George Osborne,
his predecessor, was the architect
of Project Fear. He was too close to
the Bank of England and lost his
independence. That is what needs to
change. It is an opportunity in the
budget for Philip Hammond to show he
is putting aside the Treasury's
mistakes in the past. It is very
encouraging what he is saying this
morning, about a more positive
approach to Brexit.
Lord Lawson has
accused Philip Hammond of being very
close to sabotage on Brexit. He says
we need a can-do man at the Treasury
and not a prophet of doom.
that Philip Hammond is an
exceptionally intelligent man, a
very thoughtful man. It is not a bad
thing to have a Chancellor who is
serious minded and steady, rather
than one who is a showman and uses
the Exchequer to interfere in
I have a lot
of confidence in the Chancellor.
When you launched your budget for
Brexit, you said the government has
to deliver the £350 million for the
NHS that was delivered during the
referendum, even though you didn't
think that promise should have been
made. Is that something they now
need to deliver wrong?
It is. This
only happens once we have left.
Politicians have to recognise that
voters don't look at the small print
of electoral policies. If you put
£350 million on the side of a bus
and say it may be available for the
NHS, it is reasonable for people to
think that is a promise. Brexit was
won by the Leave campaign, so it it
is important that they deliver on
that promise. Politicians must keep
faith with voters and deliver on
implied promises, as well as ones
that are set out in detail.
Cabinet will move on to talk about
the Brexit bill this week, and we
understand they may need to come up
with more money to satisfy EU
demands. The more money spent on
that is less money available for
things like spending on the NHS. Are
you worried about the size of the
You have your finger on
the important point. The government
will have to choose whether to give
lots of money to the European Union,
or whether to spend money on UK
public services, and that will be
part of the negotiation. On all
these issues, it comes down to
choice is the government makes. I
would encourage the government to
choose our own domestic public
services rather than expensive
schemes in continent or Europe.
are you advocating that the
government should spend up to £2.5
billion on a no deal scenario?
It is important that we are ready to
leave in the event of no deal. If we
left with no deal we would on
current figures still be saving the
remains of 18 billion so we would be
saving 15 and a half billion against
paying for the financial framework.
To show we're ready on day one would
be money well spent and most would
be needed any way. We need to have
new customs arrangements in place
even if it is not for a no deal
There are suggestions
that the Government might back down
on the idea of putting the time and
date of leaving the EU on the face
of the bill. Would you be Exxon
certained if that was -- concerned
if that was remove prd the bill?
is in Article 50, unless Article 50
is extended by the Council of Europe
we leave on 20th March 2019 and it
makes accepts that should be the
same in -- sense that should be in
same in domestic law. But that is a
secondary concern from my point of
view. It is important that we leave
on that date.
Stay there if you
We're joined in the studio
by the former minister
He's no relation to the Chancellor,
but he is a member
of the Treasury Select Committee
and he's one of the Tory MPs named
as "Brexit mutineers"
by the Daily Telegraph
this week - lucky him.
I'm assured you're no relation to
the Chancellor. Let's just pick up
on what Jacob Rees Mogg was saying.
How important is it to you as a
rebel that the Government does put
the date on.
I agree with Jacob it
is in the Article 50 process, the
key reason it is important is the
negotiations look like they're going
to be tricky and longer than we
expected and it may well be that we
are still negotiating up until March
2019. We could have a short couple
of weeks period of extension. Why do
harm to the economy by falling out
on a precise time? If those
negotiations need to be extended.
They won't go on for more than a
couple of weeks, because there will
be elections in Europe in June 2019
and there is no chance of a new
commission or Parliament dealing
with this. Giving it flexibility and
with this flexibility the government
said it wants flexibility in
negotiations, why give all the
advantage to the other side? Part of
that was evidenced yesterday by
somebody suggesting they will ask
for the Margaret Thatcher rebate to
be suspended. That is as a result of
putting the date on the bill.
did not agree with the Brexit
committee and think it is important
that we set the date and time?
think it is perfectly reasonable to
set the date and time and I think
these negotiations fill the time
available. The United States and
Australia agreed a free trade deal
between April 2003 and February
2004. These things don't need to be
interm Knabl if both sides want to
agree. I think the British
electorate would be very concerned
if nearly three years after the vote
to leave, we still hadn't left. I
think most people expected that we
would have left by now. The
negotiations realistically to get
through the approval of the European
Parliament and so on need to be
completed by at the end of next
year, going up to the last minute I
don't think is real is tick.
on to talk about a trade deal and
getting that done, the EU need to
agree to move on and we need to
settle the divorce, cabinet are
going to be talking about the amount
that needs to be spent on that,
Stephen what manned, are you happy
for the Government to offer more?
hope that the Government will stick
to the Florence speech in terms of
ensuring that we fulfil our
liabilities and obligations. I'm not
clear exactly whether that is 20
billion or 40 billion and I'm not
sure the government is. If part of
the divorce bill is then some
settlement for getting the trade
deal, we will need to examine that
Jacob Rees Mogg, is this
that might spark another war in the
party if the cabinet suggest they're
prepared to pay more?
I think we
need to go back to what you said,
that the - the EU said they want us
to settle the money first. The
Government doesn't need to follow
that. They need our money. If we
don't pay any money for the final 21
months of the framework, the EU has
about 20 billion pounds gap in its
finances and it has no legal
requirement to borrow. So it
insolvents or the Germans and the
others pay more. So our position on
money is very strong and we
shouldn't fall into the trap of
thinking just because Mr Barnier
said it it is as if he has received
tablets of stone like Moses, he has
There is a sense that the
Government feels a mo generous offer
would set a good tone, the kind of
approach that Jacob Rees Mogg
suggests would not make for smooth
It probably wouldn't. But
we have to be clear what we are
paying for and what we are getting.
No one is suggesting we should hand
over money without proper scrutiny.
It may be appropriate to put money
to facilitate international trade to
secure jobs. We have to be careful
about the analysis about what the
scale and size of Brexit dividend is
and the size of payments will be.
You mustn't confuse gross and net
and there is disagreement about some
of the numbers.
On that, Jacob Rees
Mogg in his budget for Brexit
suggests in five years time we would
have a 135 billion Brexit bonus. Do
you think it is real is tick.
using some analysis that has some
flaws. It is predicting a price drop
in the United Kingdom of 10%. Tariff
drops will only be 3 or 4%. It is
predicting huge productivity gains,
the likes of which we have not seen
in 20 years. Thirdly, despite his
view on modellers there is evidence
that they weren't and if you go into
the detail of the analysis, some of
the data is 14 years out of date.
Jacob Rees Mogg, you're being
I don't think
that right. I think the fall in
prices comes because you make the
economy more competitive and you
take away tariffs which reduces the
price of food by 20%. That is a big
reduction. Bear in mind that the
biggest tariffs hit food, clothing
and foot wear that, harm the poorest
in society the most. The gains from
productivity come from is in
additional tariffs. Leading to other
saving and further investment I
think the modelling done by the
professor is as good as modelling
can be. That doesn't mean it is
infallible. The failure of gravity
model is well known.
was accused of auditioning for the
job of Chancellor by using long
words. Do you know any good long
I don't think that
we want to get into this type of
business actually. I think all
Conservatives and Steven and I very
much agree on this, want to show as
united a front as we can manage.
There are differences on some
aspects of policy, but in terms of
individuals we want to stand
together and support the best
interests of the government.
Brexit Secretary David Davis
was in Berlin this week trying
to win the support of business
leaders there for a comprehensive
free trade deal with the EU.
He warned them against putting
'politics above prosperity'
and reportedly got a bit
of a frosty reception.
Well, the former Labour MP
Gisela Stuart was one of the leaders
of the Vote Leave referendum
We travelled with Gisela to Germany
to meet the business leaders
she says will help secure a good
trade deal for the UK.
Here's her film.
I was born and brought up
in this part of Germany,
and although I've lived in the UK
for the past 40 years,
and represented the constituency
of Birmingham and Edgbaston for 20
years, my family still live here,
and I've kept many links.
I was chair of Vote Leave,
and together with only a handful
of other Labour MPs,
we campaigned to leave
the European Union because we
thought the country would be
better off outside.
It's hard to remember now, but back
in the 1970s, when we joined
the European Economic Community,
people thought that by joining
the club we would see the kind
of economic miracle Germany
experienced in the '70s back home.
The "Deutsche Wirtschaftswunder"
would come to Britain.
But, of course, it didn't.
Within a few short years
of the devastation of World War II,
Germany had emerged as
the largest economy in Europe.
success is down to
the pragmatism of its business.
German Mittelstand is family
long-term thinking, reliability,
are very important values.
Changing moods on a political
landscape and changing frameworks
are toxic for our way of doing
business, and we want
that to go away.
German business is not given
to making big political statements
out of step with government policy,
but talk to those in decision-making
positions, and it is clear
that they want to secure a good deal
with the United Kingdom.
BMW employs almost 90,000
people here in Germany,
and exports just under
1 million cars annually.
The UK is a vital market.
What we are really seeking right now
is more clarity, more certainty,
because in our cycle of investment,
cycle of development,
it's about a seven-year or so period
that we look at,
but we are now, of course, starting
to think about what comes next,
and what we need to see now
is what is going to be
the trading relationship,
how are the logistics going to look,
what is going to be
the requirements for people
moving across the continent?
Because all of these things
are important to us today.
And, by the way, they will be just
as important tomorrow.
Berlin is well aware that
if the European Commission
is allowed to put up trade barriers
against Britain, it will be
German business, German consumers
and German employees
who will suffer.
I think it's very
important that we complete
the first phase successfully.
The first phase of the negotiations,
which looks at the financial
consequences of Great Britain
leaving the EU.
And then it's not a question
of punishment payments.
It's about when you are part
of a multilayer, contractual
obligation and you want to leave
that, then of course it takes
a whole lot of obligations
which you have to deal with,
so both sides are satisfied and can
live with the consequences.
It isn't everyone's interests
for the UK to part on good terms.
Of course there was going to be
upset when the UK voted to leave,
but creating uncertainty over
the terms of UK's exit will simply
have a disruptive effect
on exports to UK markets.
Far better to have a sensible,
amicable negotiation that results
both sides being able to trade
together and work
Markus Krall is managing
director of Goetzpartners,
and heads the Financial
Institution Industry Group.
Is it true to say that,
if we negotiate Brexit well,
then a good Brexit can actually
strengthen the United Kingdom,
the European Union and Germany?
It's absolutely true.
I think that this
is about two things.
One, about proving that
free trade is possible
between a European Union that is
smaller and a former member country.
If you don't prove that free
trade is possible there,
then the question becomes,
what is Europe standing for?
Number two is, I also
believe the free trade,
free market and democratic and less
bureaucratic approach that Britain
has chosen as the path
into the future is a role
model for Europe.
The time has come both
for the United Kingdom
and for the EU to be more clear
about what kind of
deal we can achieve.
Both sides need to be bold.
As long as we remain open to free
trade and sensible co-operation,
we can arrive at something that
will benefit both sides.
But one thing's obvious -
if we are an open and free trading
economy, we've got one big
cheerleader on our side,
and that is German business.
That was Gisela Stuart
setting out her case
and we'll be hearing
from the opposite side
of the argument in the coming weeks.
Gisela Stuart joins us in the studio
now, as does Alastair Campbell.
He used to work for Tony Blair
in Number 10, set up
the New European Newspaper
to campaign against Brexit,
and is so pro-European that at this
year's Labour conference
he was heard playing Ode
to Joy on the bagpipes.
Welcome both of you.
We will start with your point in the
film, that you think the German
business once the EU to offer the UK
a generous deal because it is in
their interests, yet the president
of the German equivalent of the CBI
said that defending the single
market must be the priority for the
EU, and another says that the
cohesion of the remaining member
states remains the highest priority.
The president of the CBI just after
the referendum said that it would be
in nobody 's interest to introduce
tariffs and trade barriers. On the
UK side, I don't think there's a
full understanding that economic
interests are incredibly important,
that they are trying to cover
economic interests on the cohesion
of the 27. I think different
economic interests will raise the
head of different countries. The
German auto industry is as important
as the financial sector is here. The
banking crisis is far from over, but
the big riffs which were going on is
that the E U is losing its second
biggest net contributor. Countries
like Germany want a deal with the UK
that is a free open market. There
are other tensions in the EU that
wants to become more protectionist,
and that is a bad thing.
the film there with the Jacob
Rees-Mogg interview. No matter what
side of leave you are, it is
delusional and all driven by wishful
thinking. You could find a
businessman who says Brexit will be
good for Germany. The vast bulk of
British businesses think this is a
disaster, as do the vast bulk of
European businesses. One of the
delusions on which they ran their
campaign is the idea that they need
us more than we need them. That is
Be you self about £80
billion more in goods and services
into the UK than we do to them, and
Germany has one of the biggest
deficits. It is in their interest.
Of course it is, but it is a myth
that they need us more than we need
them. The damage that will be done
to us, even with a good deal. Let's
be frank, where these negotiations
are, Theresa May is either going to
end up with a bad deal and dumber or
no Deal. A bad deal is bad, and a no
deal is a catastrophe.
setting up ideas that which were not
there to begin with and knocking
them down. Delusional.
the Brexit bonus.
If we had a
referendum, it was a democratic
decision. I know you don't like it
and that a lot of business would
have preferred to stay with the
status quo. We have had the
referendum. Undermining political
institutions is in no one's
interests. It is functioning
democracies which lead to economic
Theresa May fought an
election Inc on a hard Brexit that
As we heard from BMW,
there is uncertainty for business.
There will be elections, European
elections, in 2019. There will be a
change of the Commission and the
parliament. We have a narrow window
to implement the mandate for the
referendum which Parliament voted
for. So rather than you undermining
this country, why don't you work
together to get the best deal?
Because we totally disagree.
don't want a good deal?
favour of a good deal, and I could
give them some advice as to how they
get a good deal. First, you have a
cabinet that has an agreed strategy.
18 months in, they don't have that.
I am not undermining a deal. I am
continuing to pose questions about
what they are trying to do and how
they are trying to do it. This is
democracy. Democracy is the ability
for Parliament, which is not doing
its job properly, and the public, to
keep scrutinising, and if they want
to change their mind, having the
right to do that.
You were trying to
encourage the Taoiseach yesterday to
play hardball with the UK.
I am on
the side of the UK, and I am worried
that if we go down the path that we
are being taken down, and Theresa
May and Boris Johnson and the rest
of them, this shambolic path, we are
going to do fundamental, lasting
damage to the country we love. I
don't care about the Civil Aviation
Authority. I care about Britain. --
I don't care about the European
Union. If every lorry going into the
UK today was stopped for just two
minutes, we would create an instant
17 mile traffic jam. These people
just don't care...
I am not these
people! Let us not conflate...
people! Let us not conflate... You
either decide that you are
implementing a democratic decision
of a referendum that was called and
over 17 million voted.
You will not
stop me debating it.
stop me debating it. Just as Nigel
Stop talking about Nigel
Farrell Raj. Vote Leave was not
Nigel Farage. There is no desire in
Germany to punish the United
They are behaving
There is a battle of
protectionism and free market going
on. If we implement this properly,
give businesses the kind of
incentives they want, we can get a
good deal. So you want a bad deal?
You are driven by wishful thinking.
You are driven by wishful thinking.
Gisela Stuart, you are saying that
business will intervene to prevent
things like tariffs being put in
place? They are leaving it a bit
late to put pressure on.
find that business is laying out the
kind of things they need to get
those deals. I can find as much
fault with the speed of the
progress, but what I really do
resent is that you are actually
encouraging other countries to
Know I am not! I spoke
Know I am not! I spoke
out in support of the Irish
Taoiseach because I spent a lot of
time with Tony Blair and his team on
the Good Friday Agreement. The
people who are driving this hard
Brexit without thinking it through,
still no answer on how you do Brexit
in our island without a hard border.
I think the Irish Taoiseach is right
to call out the government on the
incompetence and the fact they have
not thought it through.
the result of the referendum and the
fact that we will be leaving the EU?
I accept the result of the
referendum, but I do not accept that
the country will definitely leave,
because the country is entitled to
change its mind. As the chaos and
costs mount, the public is entitled
to change its mind and will change
There is no evidence at
Come out with me!
me to finish the sentence.
me to finish the sentence. There is
a changing of mind happening, a
crystallisation. Unlike you, I have
fought five elections and I have won
five elections. I have probably
spoken to more people like you.
may do, I'm just saying, come out on
the road with me...
the road with me...
40% of the
population in the middle just want
us to get on with it. What that film
showed is that
showed is that if you want to make
it a self-fulfilling prophecy that
it's a disaster, which I don't. I
want to implement a deal that is
good for British jobs.
good for British jobs. The rest of
the world is changing in terms
the world is changing in terms of
technology. Currently, Germany
hasn't even got a government, and
nobody is laughing about that.
they are stable without a
Let's leave it there.
It's coming up to 11.40,
you're watching the Sunday Politics.
Coming up on the programme,
we'll be looking at the latest
Good morning, and welcome
to Sunday Politics Scotland.
Coming up on the programme:
600 jobs are saved, but how
safe is the future of
skilled manufacturing in Scotland?
I'll be asking the Economy
Secretary Keith Brown.
Scottish Labour elects a new leader.
And its old one heads
off to the jungle.
What reception will await
her when she gets back?
And if all that's not enough
for you, how about a bit of this?
As Robert Burns said, the gift they
give us to see ourselves as others
It's been a rocky week
for Scotland's renewable
Last weekend, one of the country's
most prominent engineering firms -
Burntisland Fabrications -
said it was on the verge
of going into administration.
The company, which has yards in Fife
and the Western Isles,
is at the forefront of hopes
for a global green
Last night a deal was done to save
BiFab, but the Scottish Government
says more long-term work is needed.
Andrew Black reports.
I am delighted to say that after two
days of intense discussions, we have
just reached a deal to save BiFab
It was the news
everyone hoped for. Just two days
ago, the future of Burntisland
Fabrications hung in the balance.
Employees working without pay,
hoping for a rescue deal.
Burntisland Fabrications is seen as
a company with a promising future in
Scotland pod like offshore energy
sector. In 2011 it was manufacturing
this cutting-edge wave energy
device. Alex Salmond, then the First
Minister, described BiFab as a
Scottish success story. The company
even got a visit from David Cameron,
when he was by minister. Miller
McDonnell things are looking rosy?
But things were not looking so rosy
this time last week, when
campaign-mac announced it was going
to point administrators. The problem
centre on a payment dispute between
the company and the Dutch owned
contractor Seaway Heavy Lifting.
contractor Seaway Heavy Lifting.
Come on, come Hay!
By Thursday with
the resolution in sight, the workers
and their families marched on the
Visitors one of
the measures to come here today and
try to lobby Parliament and hope
they can sort it out. Grigg it has
not been good, no one knows what is
going to happen. That is the
Are the politicians
going to help us?
We're working for
nothing does now, hopefully the
Scottish Tubman can do something
about it and get a contract.
Holyrood, the politicians grappled
with the question of Carbery's
future and the future of Scotland
pod back entire green industry. No
how can the workforce have
confidence that the Government's
transition plan will have urgent
support for their jobs and many
others that can be generated
industrial strategy that commits to
fossil fuel the commission and our
renewable industries instead?
have been trenchant in our
commitment to renewables
Yesterday morning key
players in the Carbery dispute met
the First Minister in Edinburgh, by
tea-time a result to avoid
still a lot of work to be done for
the long-term future of BiFab, and
we will be working closely with the
company and with the unions in the
weeks and months ahead.
the way for the future. Work any
renewable industry is supposed to be
the jobs of the future.
last week, the organisation
representing Scotland pod like
renewable industry is positive about
Carbery is part of a
strong supply chain to serve ours in
the global market. -- BiFab is part.
It has got huge potential.
been making equipment for a major
offshore wind farm in the Moray
Firth. That contract will not be
seen through. The question now is
what needs to be done to support
companies like BiFab in the future.
So, what's gone right?
I'm joined now by Economy
Secretary Keith Brown,
who helped broker the deal.
Obviously it is good news that you
managed to get this arrangement made
yesterday, but Nicola Sturgeon was
saying now that it is not a
long-term deal. What does that mean?
It is very good news, especially if
you are an employee who was looking
to a Christmas without wages. That
is the most important thing. It is
worth paying tribute to the
workforce, trade unions, and all the
partners that came to the table to
work out a deal, break the logjam of
a £50 million gap. The deal we have
done allows us to see through the
contract which is currently there,
through to April next year. To keep
people employed to do that. We are
actively involved with some
promising early signs in making sure
we can win further work, see
additional capital investment, and
further training of the workforce.
Ayes this goes on until April? This
is the Moray Firth, making jackets
for offshore wind turbines?
saying there is no work beyond that?
There is potential for other work.
This is the main contractor that the
companies involved in, but there is
a lot of potential, because of
further prospects in the sector, but
one thing that has been thrown out
by this crisis during the course of
the week we three times had to stop
BiFab from going into
administration, but one of the
things that has come out of this is
the regard with which the workforce
is held internationally. The
reputation of renewables...... What
do you mean never going into
reputation -- Administration three
times? They had to have a deal, they
could not sustain a situation with
people working without wages. We
have managed to avoid that. There's
added certainty that these contracts
will be seen through to April, but
beyond that, the First Minister
said, there is a huge amount of work
to do. We will be actively involved
in working with the company to make
sure we get that longer term future.
There is an issue about offshore
renewables in Scotland. It was going
to be a great new industry, but
there are some of the biggest,
largest offshore wind farms in
Europe in the UK. But they are in
England and Wales. This one any
Moray Firth will go into service,
not the only one in Scotland is at
Robin Rake which is as near as a
legacy can get without being in
England. I has not happened in a way
that we thought?
that we thought? There are huge
offshore wind farms of Lincolnshire,
one of the biggest in Europe has
just been put on the north coast of
Wales. The Thames estuary is an
enormous one. There may be
potential, but why are they not here
yet when we were told this would be
such a great thing for Scotland?
There is a huge field and further
work behind that.
That is not
This is part of the
process, these are the jackets...
Noes what we were told was that this
would be a new industry boss got in.
We would be world leaders in the
technology behind this. There is an
offshore renewables centre in
Britain, but a subpar at the moment
it is Hull where they are building a
huge yard. There was a post be a
guard in Leith, that doesn't seem to
be happening. Why didn't that happen
in Scotland in the way that we were
told it would? Melamed I don't
agree. Whether it is come Hay, and
the other company are a fundamental
part of this.
The workforce that
they have, the expertise, very
well-regarded centre, not just in
Scotland or the UK but
internationally, and we have a
challenge to make sure we get more
business. It is not just renewables
in terms of offshore wind, other
aspects, you have two...
I am not
trying to undermine the position
that BiFab has as a leader in the
thing it does, but any basic
technology, like turbines, these are
now companies in America and Germany
and Denmark that are now world
leaders. We have missed that boat. I
take your point about things coming
on stream, but that opportunity to
make Scotland a world leader in the
industry is gone.
industry is gone.
For my visit to
North America three weeks ago, that
is not the way Scotland is
perceived. We are a centre of
excellence in renewables, despite
what you say, we are perceived to be
excellent, we have pushed the
boundaries in terms of renewables by
the Parkview deals to put it centre
of what we're doing in terms of that
ship from oil and gas and we are
very much involved as is come Hay.
We have that international
In which particular
What is being done
currently at BiFab, the jackets.
There is not the same expertise in
the North America than it is here,
and has a lot of interest over their
bodies we are doing here. It is our
job to continue to put that positive
case of what we're doing in
Scotland, that is part of the reason
we're have managed to get the
successful resolution to this
particular problem. That is why we
have a positive future with Mane and
with the industry generally. -- with
BiFab. We would like to take away
the uncertainty over recent years
which has undermined investment. We
would like to see support and a
commitment to work with the Scottish
Government to increase that.
price of renewable energy is coming
down dramatically. Apparently the
last ten days were much cheaper than
nuclear, where it had been more
expensive. The Government should not
need to do anything. Under the new
contracts, offshore renewable in
Scotland as well as other parts of
the UK should be viable.
That is a
more recent development, and some
industry insiders will say though be
further volatility. That is recent,
we took the hard decisions because
of the last ten years to lead that
investment when that wasn't the
case. We want to try and continue to
give that support to the industry,
and see it joined up another part of
the supply chain. We should not rush
past the fact that this week we had
potentially 1400 people looking at
having Christmas without a wage and
are never have that. I would like to
come wind all those, including the
First Minister and individual
partners who closed
Will we ever be the Saudi Arabia of
We have to have these
kind of games.
A couple of other
matters. Alex Almond, Russian
television. What did you make of his
decision to do that?
That is a
decision for him. He is a private
citizen, one with a well-known past,
it is decision to make things up.
What is your advice? I have never
been on Russia to and I do not
expect to be yet -- on it any time
soon. You do not approve? I know the
background to Russia today. I would
predict regardless of that he will
get strong viewing figures.
not think it is damaging for his
Here's an individual citizen.
My party is not getting involved
with Russia today, we are not part
of this programme. His link to the
party is obvious but it is decision
But people will say, this
was the chap if things had gone
according to plan, he would be the
First Minister of an independent
Scotland. Here he is working for a
channel which many people see
perceived as being linked to
If he was First
Minister of an independent Scotland,
he would not be making this
What a wonderful and is.
Kezia Dugdale, she is off to "I'm a
Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here". This
is not just a matter for Labour, it
is a matter of what parliamentarians
should be doing.
point is this, the scene was -- the
same was for Nadine Doris, which is
the primarily job which is to
represent people. What strikes me as
in this we have Kezia Dugdale
flowing off to Australia, we have
Ruth Davidson going to the great
British bake off,.
There has been
talk of suspension. Is that in your
view a matter for the Scottish
Labour Party or of the Scottish
It is a matter for the
Scottish Labour Party. It is a
matter of how her party views her
absence from her primary job, as an
Thank you for joining us this
The Scottish Labour Party has
elected a new leader.
Richard Leonard, a Corbyn loyalist,
his rival, Anas Sarwar.
Mr Leonard has promised to follow
a more 'radical policy agenda',
but when we invited him
to our programme to tell us
more about his plans
for the party, he declined.
However, we spoke to one of his main
supporters, Neil Findlay,
about Labour's future, and former
leader Kezia Dugdale's decision
to appear in the TV show "I'm
a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here".
Your man won. You must be delighted?
Absolutely delighted. Delighted for
Richard on a personal level but
politically I think this is the way
that Scottish Labour Party wants to
go forward. And we are completely
holding a different agenda.
delighted. Where are you worried
about how big the margin was?
the beginning I thought it would be
very close. But I was pleased with
the margin of victory. And I think
it gives them a strong mandate.
Where is he? We asked on the
programme today. It is his first day
as leader of Scottish Labour, why
isn't he here to explain what he
wants to do?
I would expect after
nine weeks of a very intense
campaign, I hope he is having a rest
and time with his family. I
certainly would be after such an
intense period of campaigning.
you would not be. You would be
saying, here I am. I will tell you
why this is so exciting.
plenty of time for that, Gordon.
People underestimate the intensity
of being involved in a campaign like
that. It is right that people spent
time with their family.
I think that
is right. He is not here and in the
news. Another person who is in the
news are not here, is Kezia Dugdale
because she is flying off to
Australia. What do you make of her
decision to appear on "I'm a
Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here"?
Utterly ludicrous. We have a
situation in the run-up to the
budget in Scotland where local
government is on its knees, where
the NHS has shown pressures like
never before, when people's living
standards of living and the expect
their MPs, MSPs and elective
representatives to be fighting on
their behalf. I do not think people
would expect them to jet off around
the world and sit around a campfire,
eating kangaroo's appendage.
would you say to people in the
Labour Party. There are some
supportive of Kezia Dugdale who say,
come on, we are being po-faced year,
it is a bit of fun.
Well, I think it
demeans politics when people get
involved in that. We have a very
serious job to do. People out there
are struggling and there's huge
pressures on public services. That
is the job we should be doing. I
take my job very seriously, so do my
colleagues, and I think they would
The other person from
Labour who has been in the news this
week is Alec Crowley, in a much more
serious sense. He has been suspended
from the Labour Party pending
investigation of the case. Do you
think that was the correct decision,
-- Alex Rowley. I think
this whole thing has developed
around harassment is a very worrying
one. We have to be very supportive
of particularly the women who are
making complaints and who are
alleging wrong behaviour. We have to
be supporting them. But we also have
to be very careful about those who
are accused of misbehaviour and
there has to be due process going
through. Any workplace where I have
been in where someone has been
involved in misconduct, there is a
due process that takes place and
then a decision is made on whether
they are guilty or innocent. I think
we have to be very careful in this.
I am taking... Can I take from what
you have said that you think you may
be should not have been suspended?
The Labour Party has a process. That
process will be gone through. The
outcome of that will be there for
everyone to see.
We know that. But
should he have been suspended or
left in place pending that?
I do not
know all the details of the case. I
have only read one side, only what
has been in the media and that is a
one-sided view of events. I stress
for the woman who made those
complaints, this is a very serious
issue and I hope that she is being
supported. Just as I hope there are
systems in place to support anyone
who is accused of this.
challenges facing Scottish Labour. I
think it was Richard Lehnert who
kept pointing out that although you
did well relatively in the recent
general election in Scotland,
perhaps better than you expected to
do yourself, that actually there was
an optical illusion going on because
Labour only gain 10,000 votes. What
do you do to try and get their
carbon phenomenon that is sweeping
We have someone who has
the same views as Jeremy Corbyn and
fitting that forward in the
We have a credible
leader. Even at the level of
membership, there has been a bit of
an increase in membership in
Scotland, but nothing like the
Labour in England. They see the
Labour Party is the biggest Labour
Party in Europe. How do you get that
What we found on the
doorstep in the election going, we
like what the manifesto is saying,
we really like Corbyn, but we do not
know about Scottish Labour. The
thought that Scottish Labour was out
of kilter of what was being said in
the manifesto. Now I think they will
be much more aligned. Richard will
be his own man. You must be sure
about that. But I think it will be
more in line and I think it is much
more credible that someone like
Richard carries that message for the
many not the few.
So you would like
to see an uptake in membership?
course. I think people who have been
questioning whether Scottish Labour
is reflective of the mood across...
Just a moment. You have asked me a
question, I need to answer it. I
think people can come and join as
What I wanted to do was
pick up on something you said.
During people -- the election people
thought Scottish Labour was not a
line. Where the telling you that
Scottish Labour was not left wing
enough, well they tell you and it is
something that both Anas Sarwar and
Richard Lehnert said during the
election, Scottish Labour were
wobbly regarding independence.
Richard Lehnert. In the last week of
that election campaign, we heard
Nicola Sturgeon saying that if you
want Corbyn's politics you have two
vote SNP. Why did they put that out?
The new that Labour voters, who were
previously voters who had voted SNP,
were no going back to Labour. If we
had focused on the manifesto about
public services instead of banging
on about the referendum again, then
I think we would have had more than
This has to be sourced
a yes or no answers, do you want a
job in Richard's team?
I have never
asked the Labour leader for a job
now and I will not ask now.
asked you for help will you help? I
will help if he asks. Should Anas
Sarwar have our role in the team?
is up to him. I would have the
conversation with Anas Sarwar and
Now, this week universities revealed
how they hoped to meet
Scottish Government targets to raise
the number of students
from disadvantaged areas.
By 2030, the Government wants
at least a fifth of the students
at every single university to come
from a disadvantaged background.
Just now, only two
universities meet that target.
Our education correspondent
Jamie McIvor reports.
Decades ago, University was for the
privileged few. Today's student
numbers hover around historic high.
What was your favourite thing?
Kelsey is the first from her family
to secure her place and realise she
can be a role model.
It does set an
example for my little sister and
cousin 's as well if they see
someone they know who has been to
university, it might inspire them to
Kelsey helps with the University
out reach scheme, helping children
in primary schools in disadvantaged
areas. This is for primary five
students. Part of a wide-ranging
We believe in early
intervention. We will work in
primary schools, early years,
secondary schools and colleges. It
is to allow families and children to
grasp the key to further education,
especially when barriers come into
Glasgow Caledonian University
already meets these targets. The
older ones have fewer students from
disadvantaged areas and require
better exam results to get in.
Mischa is studying medicine in
I think Glasgow
is diverse and I feel in alternative
ways diverse. No one would be
disadvantaged coming to Glasgow, as
long as they have the requirements
they need further course, I do not
think they would be disadvantaged.
It is a good environment. Any
suggestion older universities are
only from youngsters from back --
better off backgrounds are nonsense.
They are the ones facing wider
challenges facing axis. Key to this
is going to a system that faces --
places more emphasis on exam
results. Just as long as the exam
results they got were over a certain
The average level at the
moment of numbers coming in from
disadvantaged areas, we recognise
the scale of the challenge going
forward. 12 years is the target. We
feel everyone can improve at the
pace we have over the past ten, 12
years, we should manage to reach
The Scottish Government
feared their plans will not go far
enough. The policy is to increase
the number of new students from
disadvantaged areas but universities
want to be sure the people they give
places too will not drop out after a
few months because they find a
course too hard. And it begs another
question. Are universities being
expected to carry too much of the
burden to create up equal playing
field. And should there be more on
tackling poverty and disadvantage
itself. To make sure those from
disadvantaged areas can get the same
grades as others. It is not an easy
circle to Square, especially for a
government who has told voters to
judge them on squaring it.
Its time now to take
a look back over events,
and to the week ahead.
Joining me today is Margaret Smith,
former Liberal Democrat MSP,
and political commentator
and former Chief of Staff
to Alex Salmond, Geoff Aberdein.
Kezia Dugdale, it was interesting
that what the band had to say was
positively moderate compared to what
Neil Findlay had to say.
Extraordinary decision. An
incredible platform for her, what we
know that in the past this has
really backfired against people who
do this, George Galloway, Tommy
Sheridan. But I will be kind to her.
I think it is only 2-macro weeks,
and it is an opportunity for her, as
she is looking to go beyond
Holyrood. -- only two weeks. This is
a signal from her that she will not
finish her days after working as an
MSP she has got her sights set
It is clearly a
risk, and are legitimate criticisms
of the decision. But how often does
a politician get an opportunity to
comedic take their message to 10
million people a night? We are
always discussing how engage the
younger voters are, maybe this is
the way. We should public have my
jumpers after she has been on and
analyse better then.
Leonard? He has won the election. I
am not just making a point about our
programme that he has not here, but
he is going out this afternoon to do
campaigning in a council by-election
in Rutherglen. He is going to do a
photo opportunity, but refused to
any questions from the media. Seems
bizarre given he has just been
It is a little bit strange.
The problem facing the Labour Party
is they have had seven leaders in
ten years. They need a credible
message and a credible messenger.
How can you gain that credible
message if you keep turning over
leaders? What other the differences
in opinion, I think the Labour Party
need to get behind their leader and
get some longevity and continuity to
make a sustained challenge.
stop the backbiting. Can they do
They have do. It is not a
question whether we think they can,
they have two. They had to make an
imprint. One thing most people
except if that Scotland needs a
strong Labour Party, to take...
Slightly surprisingly is not here,
and you know all about running small
parties, Labour is not the
second-biggest in the country. It is
the third party in Scotland. This is
the candidate who does not have a
public profile compared to the
Easily a year in there, most
people don't know who hears. This is
a great opportunity for him to top
to the nation and say, this is what
I come about. The positives of what
you said so far is that he is
focused on policy rather than
because that you should. The
positives for the result for him is
that yes, he got the trade union
backing that we expected, but he
also got the backing of the
membership, that is imported.
membership, that is imported.
are are huge challenges for him, but
huge opportunities. There are a lot
of seats in the general election
granny did not do better than they
thought, but they are running the
SNP quite close. There is a lot of
Scotland will become more
important with him as the leader,
because Jeremy Corbyn is coming up
next week, looking at 18 seats out
of the sick before he has to win to
form a Government, the allies
himself to Jeremy Corbyn, and I
think he has got a good opportunity,
the first thing he has to do is
bring in all the people including
Anas Sarwar who are not seen as his
supporters, he has only had a
handful of people in the
parliamentary group who have
supported him, he has to get a big
That is a question for
him. Whether he can put a team
together. It is going to rely on
people who did not support him,
because parliamentarians do not
support him. They will have to be
willing to say, despite the fact
that we supported Anas Sarwar, we
will serve all your team. Anas
Sarwar to take a lead on that.
would like to see him do that. You
need compromise. If you did not like
the winner, respect the boat went
the way it did. The Labour Party in
Scotland make a sustained challenge
in Scottish politics again, the need
to be united. That is something they
haven't been any number of years.
Alex Salmond on Russian television.
Let's let's have a look.
welcome to the very first episode of
the Alex Salmond Show. I am looking
forward to you joining me every week
as we host politicians, stars of
stage and screen, business
personalities, influenza leaders and
those who want to be any of the
above. As Robert Burns said, how
poor the gift they give us to see
ourselves as others see us.
Sturgeon said that she had been
asked for her advice she would have
said, maybe not. You used to be his
Abbott public had been a
Nicola's camp, and I have told Alex
that. I spoke to him afterwards. He
knows my views. I also respect the
fact that he is a private citizen
and he has an opportunity to
broadcast his views, he said he will
do it without fear or favour, I
think this show this week showed it
was a good effort in that direction.
The political probably SNP is that
the opposition parties will drag
this art at every opportunity as
long as that show goes on, and even
if it stops.
Absolutely. Alex has
taken this decision, he knew there
would be negative reaction, he is
not silly, heat it is his job to
present a show that deals with that
criticism. It will be a difficult
sell, but if any one can do it, he
Your job is secure, Gordon. He
is not going to come here and
challenge you on the basis of what
we have seen. I don't think so. It
is a credibility issue. It gives
credible to two Russia Today, and to
a state funded TV company when
basically the Russians have an
approach to journalism and LGBT
rights and human rights which is not
something that the SNP wants to be
associated with. It gives a
credibility to Alex. I cannot help
but think there is a lot of other
people who would have given Alex
Salmond, given his little
background, a job before he had to
go and take the money from them.
is prominent enough that a lot of
politicians go on this circuit, big
speeches, company boards, becoming
involved in think tanks, Alex
Salmond is at least of a status to
Yes, when we take each
other he said that, as the often
said in Scottish politics, the more
I talk about I am known, but I said,
that everyone knows you already. He
did not need the extra status. Let
see if you can create a show without
fear, without intervention, and the
same of Kezia Dugdale, we will judge
it on its merits. But it is not a...
It is a difficult sell.
news. There is this issue of whether
Scotland... That company can get
some deal in the longer term. And
also whether renewables is really
going to be in Scotland, what we
thought it was going to be.
first thing is to say it is
fantastic news, and there are
hundreds of families in the run-up
to Christmas now know they have
their jobs secure. It is this big
question going forward, not only the
Scottish Government but all the
opposition parties are wedded to the
fact that renewables was the future,
and Scotland's infrastructure and
industry. This shows us how
precarious that is. Nicola was often
on this week at the UN climate
conference, this is something which
has got fundamental backing and the
Scottish Government did a good job
in the last few days in terms of
turning this around, but it does
show how precarious it is and I
think that is something of a have to
Your analysis of the future
of the Goebbels, but we are
completely out of time.
That's all from the us this week.
I'll be back at the
same time next week.
Until then, goodbye.