North-east Scotland Green Freeport bid team head to Westminster

The North-East Scotland Green Freeport Bid group has taken its plans to Westminster at a business forum hosted by David Duguid MP to discuss its plans to create 32,000 high-quality jobs and boost the region’s economy by £8.5 billion over the next deade.

The Banff and Buchan MP outlined his support for the proposals at the event, which was attended by Aberdeen Harbour board chief executive Bob Sanguinetti and Peterhead Port Authority chief executive Simon Brebner.

Other representatives included chief commercial officer at Storegga Steve Murphy, Asco’s chief executive officer Peter France and Jimmy Buchan of the Scottish Seafood Association.

Chris Foxall, finance director at Riversimple, also attended after it was revealed the company wants to build a manufacturing plant in Aberdeen if freeport status is granted for the north-east.

David Duguid MP with members of the consortium and stakeholders

The Riversimple plant would potentially create 800 jobs and produce more than 5,000 vehicles per year.

Mr Duguid said it was fantastic to welcome the representatives to Westminster and spoke of his commitment to do all he could to push for the north-east bid to be selected.

He said freeport status would be transformational for the region.

He said: “In my own constituency of Peterhead, a freeport would deliver unprecedented investment opportunities in addition to our bustling port, our thriving fish market and the Acorn CCS and Hydrogen Project plans at St Fergus.

"A freeport here in the north-east would help harness the power of our region’s highly skilled workforce, create thousands of jobs and grow our established and emerging sectors.

“This is exactly why both of Scotland's governments must press on with taking advantage of the phenomenal benefits of this north-east bid.”

West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine MP Andrew Bowie added: “Once again, we as north-east Conservatives have underlined our support for an Aberdeen and Peterhead freeport which would put the region at the forefront of the UK’s drive to net zero.

"It was great to welcome the group to Westminster and they deserve huge praise for putting together such a fantastic bid that will ensure we have the cutting-edge sectors of the future.”