SNP candidate for Dumfries & Galloway Richard Arkless has today (Tuesday) accused the UK Government of continuing to ignore the economic needs of Southwest Scotland as the latest round of rural fuel rebates missed out anywhere in the region. In total 17 areas were granted permission to allow retailers to claim back 5p per litre relief on fuel duty and pass the savings on to customers, including areas in the Highlands, Argyll and Bute, Northumberland, Cumbria, Devon and North Yorkshire.
Mr Arkless commented: “This is yet another example of Dumfries & Galloway being forgotten by the Westminster system. Our lower than average wages, higher reliance on the rural economy and sparse population means D&G has been handed yet another economic handicap.
“I don’t grudge any remote part of this country the opportunity of some relief from the eye-watering cost of fuel but I struggle to believe that there is nowhere at all in this huge region which is considered remote enough to qualify.
“For many people in this region a car isn’t a luxury but the only way of getting to work. As far as business is concerned everything has to travel by road and many of the most remote parts of this region are also those where people struggle to find sustainable employment. Dumfries & Galloway could really have benefited from this scheme but it looks like we have been ignored.
“This is a classic example of how a strong group of SNP MPs can keep their eye on the ball and make sure regions like ours are better protected in Westminster.”