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Reform Scotland News: 17 July 2012

All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions. Where there is a link to a newspaper’s website, the relevant page reference is highlighted and underlined. 

In addition to the newspaper stories outlined below, further news coverage can be found online at BBC News Scotland, STV News and Sky News

 

Politics

SNP defence policy: SNP defence spokesman Angus Robertson is reportedly expected to urge the SNP to abandon its anti-NATO policy, although it is remains opposed to nuclear weapons. The move is expected to be extremely controversial with core SNP supporters. (Scotsman page 1, Herald page 1, Times page 8, Telegraph page 1 Express page 2, Sun page 2, Record page 4, Press & Journal page 11, Mail page 8)

 

Coalition support: Support for the coalition has dropped, with Labour now being perceived as the ‘most competent’ of all three major UK parties, but David Cameron and Nick Clegg reaffirmed their commitment to the coalition, saying that theirs would be a full 5-year government. (Times page 1, Gavin Kelly comments in the Guardian, Mail page 10)

 

Greenpeace protest: Activists protesting at the Shell Oil Company’s decision to drill in the Arctic succeeded in temporarily shutting down three Shell petrol stations in Edinburgh and up to forty in London. (Scotsman page 3, Guardian page 23, P&J page 11, Mail page 13)

 

Gay marriage: The Scottish government’s decision on gay marriage in Scotland is due today after a consultation. The Equality Network has asked the government to “stand firm” in its support for gay marriage, while Catholic leaders have called for a referendum. (Times page 8, Record page 8, P&J page 22, Mail page 8, Courier page 16)

 

The EU: Peter Jones comments on Scotland’s place in the EU in The Scotsman.

 

Gay marriage: Ewan Crawford comments on the gay marriage debate in The Scotsman.

 

Lib Dems: Christine Jardine comments on the Scottish Liberal Democrats in The Scotsman.

 

Economy

Retail: One in four shops and one in five hotels in Scotland are at risk of closing over the next year, according to a report by the trade body for insolvency professionals. (Scotsman page 35, Express page 1, Telegraph page 2)

 

IMF growth warning: The IMF’s growth forecast for the UK has been revised downwards to 0.2 per cent, from an earlier estimate of 0.8 per cent. (Scotsman page 11, Sun page 2, FT page 1, Guardian page 21, Mail page 2)

 

Pension payout: A PricewaterhouseCoopers report has found that the UK’s top 350 firms are facing even bigger pensions deficits, threatening the ability to pay out. (Herald page 5)

 

Energy prices: Planned infrastructure upgrades to the UK’s gas and electricity network are expected to add about £15 per year to consumers’ energy bills, according to regulator Ofgem. (Herald page 4, Scotsman page 19)

 

Milk prices: Supermarket Morrisons has announced plans to review its milk buying policy following the debate over fair prices between milk producers and processors. (Herald page 1)

 

Oil prices: A report has alleged that traders may have manipulated oil prices, distorting them in a similar way to the Libor rate fix. (Record page 2)

 

Currency: George Kerevan comments on currency options for Scotland in The Scotsman.

 

Health

Dementia risk: A study has found a link between the hours slept by older people and their risk of dementia. (Scotsman page 1, Herald page 7)