Speaking today after the UK Border Agency (UKBA) inflicted damage on the islands’ economy by not allowing a seaman into Scotland to work on a fishing boat, Na h-Eileanan an Iar SNP MP, Angus MacNeil is to write to the Immigration Minister, James Brokenshire MP asking that something be done before companies and fishing boats go out of business through the actions of the UKBA.

Commenting Angus MacNeil MP said:

“I am utterly dismayed by the news today from one of my constituents that he had a potential crewman for a fishing vessel turned back at Glasgow airport today.  His boat which has not been working for 3 months due to lack of crew will continue with its difficult circumstances.

The UK’s policy on migrant workers is not fit for purpose for Scotland.

I am dismayed at the damage the UKBA is doing to the economy of the islands by refusing entry to someone who is wanted and needed to keep fishing boats at sea and processing jobs ashore.

“We have be let down really badly, too often the tone of the media and government in the UK is unhelpful, and is not conducive to the serious business of jobs and the economy.

“In countries like Switzerland, each Canton has powers over foreigners entering.  The UK on the other hand has a centralised ‘one size fits all’ approach, which does not work for the fishing economy around the Scottish Coasts.

“I am writing to James Brokenshire MP, to get some semblance of sense and a change of policy, if only for the enlightened self-interest of getting more tax to the treasury in London from more activity in our economy.  The UK government has been a hindrance not a help.”