David Stewart MSP

Archive for October 2009

North MSP Visits Taiwan

31st. October 2009

Representatives of the Taiwan Government have been invited to Inverness for discussions which could lead to inward investment, students and a boost for the Highland whisky industry.

North Labour MSP David Stewart accepted an invitation via SNP colleague Dr Ian McKee to join a Scottish Parliament all-party delegation to be the guests of the Taiwan Government for one week, at no cost to the Scottish taxpayer.

Mr Stewart said, “Taiwan is the fifth largest importer of Scotch whisky so before I went I had a briefing from representatives of the Scotch Whisky Association and distillers.

“Since my return I have updated them with contacts and information which I hope will generate business.

“Taiwan has one of the most vibrant economies in the world and in a meeting with their Government Ministers, they indicated their interest in inward investment to Scotland and I flagged up what Inverness and the Highlands has to offer.

“I am meeting Taiwanese officials in Edinburgh next month to further discuss inward investment and will continue to press the Highland case for hosting new developments, which could boost jobs at a crucial time.

“Taiwan students see foreign study as a key component in their educational development, which their Government encourages.

“They come to the UK in very significant numbers but Scotland does not get its fair share of these.

“I made the point to key decision-makers that our city and the Highlands is a tremendous area to live and study in.

“There are also key opportunities for collaboration between Taiwan and Scotland in areas such as renewables and life sciences.

“I was asked for further details which, since my return, I have now furnished to the Taiwan Government, and I have informed the Scottish Government of this dialogue.

“I am genuinely hopeful that something positive can come of this as far as my own area is concerned but I don’t want to say too much as there are matters I am following up behind the scenes.”

David Stewart added, “I was pleased to be invited by the Taiwan Government, via Dr Ian McKee MSP, who feels it is important that Scotland strengthens links with a country with such a robust economy.

“I liaised with British Council and Scottish Enterprise staff in Taiwan to make that case – while taking the opportunity to flag up what the Highlands and Islands has to offer.

“They are certainly very interested in greater trade with Scotland and setting up businesses here and when we meet soon in Edinburgh I will be encouraging them to come north to see the quality of staff and quality of life that is available.

“The fact that a Scottish Parliament delegation came to them on a working visit, in response to their request, was viewed very positively by a potentially key player in assisting our economic recovery.

“It was an intensive round of meetings but we were made very welcome and I am working assiduously to ensure there are positive outcomes, both for Scotland and the Highlands.

“A key step forward in this is clinching a visit to Inverness by Taiwan Government personnel and I’m keen to make headway on this to allow major figures in the local economy the chance to meet and speak to them.”


Written by davidstewart

October 29, 2009 at 10:43 am

Posted in Uncategorized