SNP say Brexit will be bad for Ayrshire

SNP candidate Corri Wilson.
SNP candidate Corri Wilson.

The SNP candidate for Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock has hit out at the Tories for planning a robbery of our rural communities.

Corri Wilson said the Conservatives’ obsession with a ‘damaging and chaotic’ Brexit is set to harm Ayrshire’s agriculture, food and drink and tourism sectors.

Corri Wilson said: “Ayrshire’s agriculture, our food and drink industries, and the tourism that they help drive, are at the very heart of our economy. But these sectors also face real risks from an unopposed Tory government.

“Rural Scotland is much more reliant on our links with Europe than agriculture in the rest of the UK – and losing EU funding will have a disproportionate impact on Scottish agriculture. This, coupled with the detrimental effects of potential trading tariffs, is a real concern for our farming communities, many of which trade primarily with the EU.

“Scotland is still due £160 million of EU convergence funding that the UK only qualified for because of the high concentration of farmers here – but the Tories continue to withhold this vital funding that rural Scotland deserves. It’s daylight robbery – and is yet another example of vital funding streams that will go missing after Brexit.

“The Tories are only guaranteeing current farm funding to the end of the next Westminster parliament, and there is no guarantee that Scotland will get its fair share. Currently, we are entitled to 16.5% of UK CAP funding, worth £500 million a year – a different formula would potentially devastate farming and food production in our rural communities.

“Just like our fishing community – farming is but a small pawn in the Tories’ reckless game of politics and it is disappointing that they have failed to provide funding guarantees beyond Brexit for these sectors in their manifesto. A vote for the SNP is a vote to stand up for Scotland’s interests and those of our vital farming communities in the face of the Tories’ chaotic Brexit negotiations, which pose the biggest challenge to farming in Ayrshire in at least a generation.”