Aberdeen & Grampian Chamber of Commerce this morning (April 29) hosted a hustings event with candidates from across the North-east of Scotland to debate the key issues facing the region’s economy as the Scottish Election approaches on May 6.

Candidates from the main parties currently represented in the Scottish Parliament debated a range of issues including the steps they would take if elected to drive forward our economic recovery from CV19 in the immediate term, and how they would respond to some of the major strategic issues facing the region, such as the risks to our connectivity post-pandemic.

Chamber members put a range of questions to the prospective parliamentarians, seeking views on how the parties would tackle perennial issues like the future of the business rates system, and whether they would levy any new taxes on firms to fund their election pledges.

Commenting on the event, Russell Borthwick, chief executive of Aberdeen & Grampian Chamber of Commerce said: “The upcoming Scottish Parliamentary election will decide the make-up of the Scottish Government that will guide our recovery from the CV19 pandemic. It is without doubt the single most important task that has faced the Scottish Parliament since devolution in 1999.

“With that in mind, it was great to welcome candidates from the main parties to put the priorities of the North-east business community to them and hear how each plans to deliver a sustainable economic recovery and return our region and nation to growth.

“The Chamber stands ready to work in partnership with all political parties represented in the next Scottish Parliament to address the economic emergency created by COVID-19 and ensure that the Aberdeen City Region is able to meet its potential, not least as the focal point in the country’s just transition to a net-zero future."

The recording of the event is available here.

Candidates represented at the hustings were:

Candidate

Party

Douglas Lumsden

Scottish Conservatives

Guy Ingerson

Scottish Greens

Michael Marra

Scottish Labour

Rosemary Bruce

Scottish Liberal Democrats

Christian Allard

Scottish National Party

The Chamber’s North-east election priorities document – Rebuilding our Region – is available in full here. You can read more about the Chamber's manifesto here.