UK slammed for charging Scots to promote whisky19th May, 2014 by Neal Baker
The Scottish National Party (SNP) has criticised the UK government for charging Scottish organisations to promote whisky in UK embassies, citing that Scottish taxpayers contribute to Foreign Office hospitality.
The party claim that the UK government has charged Scottish organisations to promote whisky – one of the UK’s biggest exports – despite other UK trade and investment groups holding similar events in Foreign Office facilities free of charge.
They say that Scottish Development International is being charged £3000 a time for receptions promoting whisky.
The SNP, which leads the devolved Scottish government and is leading the campaign for Scottish independence, has pointed to William Hague, the foreign secretary, and his claim that foreign embassies would charge to promote whisky after Scotland becomes independent. This has come under ridicule after the news emerged that the UK government is already charging Scottish organisations.
Commenting, SNP Westminster Leader and Moray MP Angus Robertson MP said: “Scots taxpayers are being double-charged by the Foreign Office to promote one of the UK’s biggest exports.
“Scotland’s whisky industry has being going from strength to strength – but with little thanks to the UK government.
“Scottish Development International has done fantastic work to promote Scottish trade and investment worldwide, but the charges they have faced by UK embassies is an example of how Scotland is losing out because of decisions made at Westminster.”