Scottish news bulletin: 2nd April 2009


All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions.


G20 Summit: World leaders meeting today will try to reach agreement on a plan to tackle the current economic crisis. French and German premiers are said to be taking a regulatory stance, challenging Gordon Brown’s initial proposal for the summit to decide upon a co-ordinated global fiscal stimulus. (The Herald page 1, pages 4 & 5, The Guardian page 1, Timothy Garton Ash in The Guardian, FT page 1, FT page 5 & page 6, Daily Mirror page 6 & page 7, Daily Express page 6, The Scotsman page 10 & page 11, The Times page 1 & page 4, Daily Record page 8 & page 9, The Courier & Advertiser page 1, The Daily Telegraph page 1, The Daily Mail page 1)

Dunfermline takeover: First Minister Alex Salmond has challenged the Financial Services Authority over a letter it sent to the Dunfermline Building Society claiming that neither Westminster nor the Scottish Government would be prepared to make a contribution to prevent a takeover by another company. He denied that this was the Scottish Government’s position and said that he would have supported the role of government in assisting with a rescue package. (The Herald page 10, Daily Record page 15, The P & J page 13, The Courier & Advertiser page 9, Alan Cochrane in The Daily Telegraph)


Human Trafficking: A study published by the Scottish Government yesterday showed that, despite there never being a conviction in Scotland for human trafficking, there have been around 79 reported victims of it. Furthermore, it drew links between organised crime such as prostitution and drug smuggling and suggested that police from the countries of the victims could be brought in to help tackle the problem. (The Herald page 10, Daily Mail page 40)


Tram works boss: Edinburgh’s Chamber of Commerce president and former managing director at Edinburgh Airport, Richard Jeffrey, will now oversee construction of the city’s £512million tram system. (The Herald page 9, The Scotsman page 15)

Local Government

GHA investigation: An enquiry is to be launched into the fiasco which saw 230 repair and maintenance staff from Glasgow Housing Association, Scotland’s largest social landlord, left temporarily without an employer when GHA terminated the contract, at the last minute, of a successful bidder because it could not provide the £200million pensions bond for them. (The Herald page 8)


Prescription charges: Health Secretary Nicola Sturgeon yesterday welcomed the reduction in prescription charges which have dropped to £4 as part of a larger move to have them abolished altogether. (The Herald page 10, Daily Record pages 28 & 29)

Licensing plea: The British Medical Association Scotland have released a report calling upon licensing boards when granting new licences to consider the cost of these to health. (The Herald page 2, The Scotsman page 14, The P & J page 9)


University funds: Research funding is to be cut for seven Scottish Universities – among the worst affected being Stirling University and the University of Strathclyde. (The Scotsman page 7, The Times page 16, The P & J page 4)


North Sea accident: Investigators are currently trying to determine the cause of a helicopter crash into the North Sea off the coast of Aberdeen yesterday afternoon. Eight bodies have been recovered and another eight are missing, presumed dead. It is suspected that the accident was due to a mechanical failure in the aircraft. (The Herald page 1 & page 3, The Sun page 1 - page 5, The Guardian page 11, Daily Mirror page 1, page 4 & page 5, Daily Express page 1, The Scotsman page 1 – page 5, The Times page 1 & page 3, Daily Record page 1 – page 5, The P & J page 1, The Courier & Advertiser page 1, The Daily Telegraph page 1, The Daily Mail page 1)

Alex Salmond’s wage increase: Alex Salmond is to donate his pay increase as a Westminster MP, as well as that from his role as First Minister, to charity. (The Scotsman page 6, The P & J page 7)

Creative Scotland: Key figures from the Scottish literary community will gather to ensure that Scotland’s new arts funding body, Creative Scotland, will give appropriate attention to the culture of literature and writing in Scotland as well as the areas already covered by the predecessor bodies; the Scottish Arts Council and Scottish Screen. (The Herald page 12)

Reform Scotland is an independent, non-party think tank that aims to set out a better way to deliver increased economic prosperity and more effective public services based on the traditional Scottish principles of limited government, diversity and personal responsibility.


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