Sir Ian Wood, Chairman of ETZ Ltd, Said:
“We congratulate both Cromarty and Forth Ports on their successful bids and wish them well in delivering their respective ambitions.
“We are, of course, hugely disappointed that the North East Green Freeport has not been approved. The UK Government has emphasised the importance of meeting its net zero targets and protecting the country’s energy security, while the Scottish Government has expressed its commitment to repositioning the North East of Scotland as the ‘Net Zero Capital of the World.’
"We have a world-class energy sector and the North East is uniquely positioned to meet both of these ambitions. So, despite this set-back, we will continue to strive to bring large-scale, advanced manufacturing and technology to Aberdeen to maximise economic benefit from Scotland’s rapidly growing offshore wind and hydrogen sectors and accelerate pioneering carbon capture projects on the Buchan coast.
“However, the UK Government’s overly severe application of the Energy Profits Levy and the Scottish Government’s new position supporting a presumption against oil and gas exploration, are economically damaging and seriously risk creating an adverse environment for investment in the industry at a time we need to be doing all we can to maximise our energy security and sustain jobs to support energy transition and meet net zero targets.
"Awarding North East Scotland Green Freeport status would have significantly helped in ameliorating these policies. It is therefore now incumbent upon both Governments to act swiftly and demonstrate their long term-support for the region through meaningful interventions that ensure we continue to play a leading role in securing both Scotland and the UK’s energy and economic security for generations to come.”