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18/02/14 14:53

Media Briefing - Tuesday 18 February 2014

Post Cabinet Media Briefing by the First Minister’s Official Spokesperson (FMOS) and the First Minister’s Special Adviser (FMSA)

The FMOS and FMSA welcomed journalists to the post-cabinet briefing.

FMOS said that Paul Wheelhouse, Minister for Environment and Climate Change, attended cabinet to update Ministers on the impact of the winter weather, and resilience efforts. He will come back to cabinet next week to present a paper on how to augment Scotland’s existing capacity even further.

She added that the First Minister (FM) will be speaking at a Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) event in Glasgow tomorrow morning. He will use the speech to announce £4 million of funding to allow SCVO to deliver 1,200 job opportunities through phase 4 of community jobs Scotland.

When asked whether there had been a discussion about EU membership or currency at cabinet, FMSA replied that there was no substantive discussion, but the Deputy First Minister would be answering topical questions on both the issue of an independent Scotland’s continued EU membership and on currency in Parliament this afternoon. He reiterated the Scottish Government’s position that a currency union would be beneficial to the whole of the UK in the event of independence.

Journalists asked when the Fiscal Commission Working Group will next meet, when it last met and how many times it has met in the last year. FMSA said the group meets regularly, and that specific details will be provided.

FMOS was asked about arrangements for Monday’s cabinet meeting in Portlethen. Cabinet will meet at 9.30am followed by a public discussion in the church at 12pm. There will be at least one visit from the FM nearby.