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Scottish Industrial Decline

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An extra trillion! That’s what the lockdowns have cost us, Higher taxes, Higher unemployment, Entire sectors in infrastructure and industries wiped out. Another failed generation, followed by another is what’s coming if we continue to have weak people that have no form of pragmatism, no form of a spark or an idea of what they’re doing, and no intent but to sit and grow fat off of the public while we suffer.

There are few of our industries that haven’t been hit by the pandemic but even more so have been crippled by the lockdowns. Many were suffering before Covid was on our lips for a great many in our industries that won’t recover for years and even more, haven’t even been that lucky, I have lost count of the storefronts that are empty and vacant. These industrial sectors will require a monumental amount of investment into these Industries such as hospitality just to return them to where they were; even if they can return to where they were, the earliest I have seen is 2023. A major contribution to these failed businesses has been the crippling rents that have first driven those small businesses into debt and then finally into a crippled closure.

Edinburgh, Scotland, UK. 9 March 2021. Pictured: Jamie-lee McMillan. Candidate photos and photoshoot for Reform UK Scotland Party for the up and coming Holyrood Scottish Parliamentary Elections in May 2021. Michelle Ballantyne MSP is Leader of the Party. Credit: Colin Fisher

This didn’t have to be, as bad as it became. Instead of mandating a reduced rent rate for businesses that couldn’t do business, we allowed furlough money to be spent on something that shouldn’t have happened in the first place. Instead of mandating something fair, dare I even say moral, we permitted our representatives to throw money, which we don’t have, at a problem that we didn’t have to allow to come into being. Those sectors have been failed by the incompetence and greed of our leaders.

But though some of our sectors were always going to suffer in cases such as this, we could have turned this horror show of year it to something positive for our economy and people. If only we had invested wisely, correctly and had the fortitude to our outlook to recognise that this could have been a great opportunity.

A perfect example our shipyards, Scotland for centuries were the place for the best vessels in the world responsible in the 1900s for the 20% of all the worlds ships is not even a shadow of its former self, yes we’ve nationalised a shipyard on the Clyde but nothing like the investment into our infrastructure that a country which is surrounded by water in three directions should have done.

We have paid for that failure by losing out in a time when at the start of the pandemic that cruise ships, small/ medium transport ships and small cargo ships were being sold for scrap to then immediately be turned into larger cargo vessels. If Scotland had been invested in properly when an opportunity such as this was available, we would have those contracts we would have had the demand and the ability to fulfil it and now that we have left the EU and we will have our fisheries, we will need new vessels for our fishing fleet that we can’t produce ourselves in their entirety.

Will we demand that these areas are invested in for our future or will we be content to sit on the side-lines and allow another opportunity to pass us by?

Jamie-Lee McMillan