Arnish Yard Report : Peter Peacock MSP comments

22 May 2007

Commenting on the Arnish Yard report, Highlands and Islands Labour MSP, Peter Peacock, said,

"Hindsight is a great thing and never available to you when making investment decisions.

"HIE exists to support economic development, particularly in our most challenging areas economically and inevitably some risk is involved, that is the nature of their business.

"At the time HIE were making these decisions the renewables market was just taking off, unemployment in the Islands was high and Arnish had every prospect of being on the crest of the wave in winning orders and providing good quality jobs.

"As it transpires the market was slower to pick up than anyone had envisaged and that has led to current difficulties.

"I believe HIE were right to make the investment their job is to support investment, particularly in the Islands, and I believe there is still potential multi-user use at Arnish.

"If HIE over the years had never taken any risks, we would not have seen the truly remarkable turnaround in our economic fortunes and the huge improvements in the economy of the Highlands and Islands we have seen.

"HIE is widely regarded as the pre-eminent economic development agency probably anywhere in Europe and we should not rush to condemn them on the back of this."


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