The Deputy First Minister has announced that Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) will lose its governing board today at Holyrood, along with other enterprise agencies.
Uncertainty over the future of HIE has spiked since a review of enterprise and skills recommended a single board be introduced.
At parliamentary questions this afternoon, John Swinney MSP confirmed that the government’s “intention is that, once established, this overarching board will replace individual agency boards”.
Following the exchange, Liam McArthur MSP said:
"The abolition of the Highlands and Islands Enterprise board is further evidence of this government’s obsession with centralising control and decision-making. Ironically, it comes just 24 hours before a government debate on strengthening our island communities.
“In the Highlands and Islands we know that economic development invariably requires different solutions to the central belt. Achieving those solutions has now been made harder by the decision to remove HIE’s board.
“It will be interesting to see if SNP MSPs for the Highlands & Islands are prepared to back this decision or stand up for the interests of their constituents”