Conservative Diary

« Labour has become the nasty party | Main | Conservatives reluctantly accept that asset sales are "probably necessary" »

Scottish Tories attack the protectionist SNP over plan to ban foreigners from buying Scottish land

FraserMurdo The Sunday Times reports that at its conference this week the Scottish National Party is debating a motion which would introduce a new policy which could "ban foreigners from buying land":

"New rules could force anyone seeking to buy an estate to make Scotland their main home and commit to living here for most of the year. Landowners of holdings of 100 acres or more would require to make their identity public... The SNP is expected to agree at its conference in Inverness this week to order an investigation into the feasibility of imposing residency obligations on all overseas landowners for future land sales. Ministers are also likely to be asked to examine the practicality of banning offshore trusts and companies from owning private land in Scotland."

Apart from the restriction on those outside Britain that this would involve, given the SNP's aspiration for independence, would the description of "foreigner" extend to those of us living elsewhere in the UK??

The Scottish Conservative deputy leader, Murdo Fraser (pictured), has responded angrily:

"This reveals the true face of the SNP - insular and introverted to the core. On one hand the SNP Government speaks of the need for Scotland to attract foreign investors. But the vast majority of the party has a deep suspicion and mistrust of people outside Scotland. What happens if someone from Wales wanted to buy some properties that they could rent out and subsequently help Scottish tourism? This ridiculous and damaging idea needs to be brutally stamped on at the SNP's conference. We cannot afford to further erode Scotland's reputation as a place to do business."

Jonathan Isaby


You must be logged in using Intense Debate, Wordpress, Twitter or Facebook to comment.