May 27, 2022

Despite disagreements with the Scottish Greens over the implementation of the two Green Free Ports, the Scottish Government will work with the British Government to move these projects forward.

The Scottish Government insists that decarbonization and fair work in Scotland’s Green Free Port projects will be at the center of their vision.

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What are the freeports and why are there differences between the Scottish Greens and the SNP around them?

Overview of the harbor and dockside area in Dundee, Scotland. The Chancellor of the United Kingdom, Rishi Sink, yesterday announced the sites for the free ports of England and the sites for Scotland are yet to be decided. The Scottish Government intends to adopt the UK’s proposal to establish free ports to make them green ports. In the race are Roseth, Dundee, Hunterston, Orkney, Cromarty Firth and Aberdeen. (Photo by Jeff J. Mitchell / Getty Images)

What is a free port?

An independent port is a free economic zone (FEZ) designated by the trade and commerce administrations of different countries.

The term is used to define areas where companies are taxed very lightly or to encourage economic activity with tax laws and duties set by each country.

Following Brexit, the British government proposed the creation of ten free ports, eight of which have already been ratified in England.

This comes at a time when the European Union is imposing sanctions on 82 free zones, whose special status has helped finance terrorism, money laundering and organized crime.

What will the free port be like in Scotland?

After months of disagreement with the British government over the setup around the free port in Scotland, the Scottish government has now accepted the free port plan based on changes.

The Scottish Government has resisted the idea of ​​a free port, aimed at reviving deprived areas, but has been accused of tax evasion and encouraging less regulation.

Scottish ministers have instead proposed green ports, based on low-emission industries and fair practices.

The agreement with Scotland appears to follow this model, but under the name of “Green Free Port”.

The project proposes two green free ports, which could be rail or airports as well as seaports, and they can apply with other local businesses as well as councils and other public bodies.

Both the Scottish and UK governments will review the bids and agree on a choice.

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Greenfree Ports Scotland: ‘It will be a fair process’, says Kate Forbes …

Where will the free ports be?

Locations for Scotland have not yet been confirmed, but bidding for both locations will run from this spring to summer.

However, in July last year, the Scottish Government released a list of areas under consideration for its Green Port projects.

This list includes Dundee. A series of areas around the Firth of Forth; A similar set of sites around Glasgow; Cairnryan, a port near Stranraer; Shetland; Orkney Aberdeen and Peter Head; Rosyth and Montrose.

The Department of Leveling Up, Housing and Communities, which is leading the process, says it hopes the sites will be up and running by spring next year.

The Scottish Government aims to publish a new prospect in Scottish ports in March, with the hope that the winning bids will be announced in the summer.

Finance Secretary Kate Forbes said the Scottish government hopes the ports will be operational by the end of this year.

What is the position of SNP on Freeport?

Following previous disagreements over the potential fraudulent activities of Freeport, the SNP has recently agreed to free ports based on changes in the agreement with the UK government.

Outlining the changes, Finance Secretary Kate Forbes told the BBC’s Good M
orning Scotland: Moving forward [with the UK Government].

“Second, we will get full, fair funding. Funding for the Green Freeport has doubled from a few months ago.

“Third, at the heart of the Green Free Port approach are decarbonization projects.

“And finally, and most importantly for us, fair work will be embedded in his heart.”

“It would be fair.”

Ms Forbes added: “If the bidder does not follow fair practices, he will not win.”

The finance secretary also said the Scottish government would not support such an economic move unless it “shifted the dial to net zero”.

What have the Scottish Greens said about Freeport?

The Scottish Greens have distanced themselves from the implementation of the Green Free Port, perhaps the biggest disagreement since the cooperation agreement with the SNP.

The Scottish Greens do not agree with the Freeport Agreement, and say the scheme provides tax breaks and public money for multinational companies.

Ross Greer of the Scottish Greens told the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland that ports are a “corporate gift” and a source of “greenwashing”.

Greenfreyport has been excluded from the cooperation agreement with Greens and SNP.

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