Michael Moore MP’s Westminster Notes

Cabinet reshuffle

Last week I was honoured to be re-appointed as Scottish Secretary by the Prime Minister as he conducted his first re-shuffle of the UK Government cabinet since the 2010 election. Combining this with my responsibilities as Borders MP has been a great privilege over the last two years and I am looking forward to continuing to serve Borderers and Scots in these two roles.

There is no doubt that Scotland currently faces many challenges in terms of the economy, growth and jobs and I am committed to getting the best deal for Borderers and all other Scots, as MP and as Secretary of State for Scotland. By cutting tax for people on low incomes, cutting tax for businesses and forcing the banks to lend, the Government has already put money back into people’s pockets and is helping businesses to grow and create jobs. The new cabinet will continue this work to put the UK back on a stable economic footing and as part of that team I will ensure that Scotland’s interests are heard loud and clear.

Paralympics

In my role as Secretary of Scotland I was asked last week to present medals to the winners of the S3 women’s 100m freestyle and the SM12 women’s 200m individual medley at the Aquatics centre in the Olympic park. It was a huge honour to be able to hand the medals to the athletes and congratulate them on their success.

The support for our paralympic team up and down the country has been fantastic and the fact that they have exceeded their Beijing medal tally just goes to show what a great set of athletes they are. It has been amazing to see them achieve so much during these games and I know they have been a fantastic inspiration for everyone watching.

Petrol prices

High petrol prices continue to be a huge concern for Borderers so last week I welcomed news that the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) will hold a review into petrol prices. The review will look at whether competition in the petrol market is being inhibited and whether the benefits of lower oil prices are being passed on to motorists.

It is very frustrating for motorists that while the cost of crude oil has decreased, this has not translated into reduced petrol prices and I hope that this review will begin to tackle this issue. I also met with the Chairman and the Scottish Director of the OFT last week and urged them to ensure that the review is thorough and places a strong emphasis on achieving a fairer deal for consumers. The findings will be published in January and, as an MP for a rural area where people depend on cars to get around, I will be taking great interest in their conclusions.

* Michael Moore was the Liberal Democrat MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk from 1997-2015 and Secretary of State for Scotland from 2010-2013.

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