Scottish Land & Estates, which represents landowners across Scotland, said today it supports Cabinet Secretary Richard Lochhead’s call to ensure a vibrant tenant farming sector but maintains that the introduction of an Absolute Right to Buy will prevent this from being achieved.
Scottish Land & Estates members are wholly committed to a tenanted sector that attracts investment, improves productivity, creates opportunities for new entrants and is characterised by good relationships between tenants and landlords.
Luke Borwick, chairman of Scottish Land & Estates, said : “We have made some very progressive proposals to help take the sector forward and are committed to working with government and the industry to deliver change that will benefit agriculture. We welcome the Cabinet Secretary's general comments today to the Scottish Parliament's Rural Affairs, Climate Change and Environment Committee about the forthcoming agricultural holdings review , and like him hope that it delivers exciting measures which benefit the sector . We will play an active role in that review.
" Our members operate land- based businesses and tenant farming is an integral part of these businesses. It is in our members’ interest to let land and, above all, they want to see a vibrant and successful tenanted sector that gives the next generation of farmers a chance to get going. Our stance remains the same with regard to ARtB – and the negative impact of continuing calls for its introduction are clearly evident through the ever increasing loss of confidence in letting.
“The debate on ARTB should be based on evidence that clearly investigates the impact of ARtB on a vibrant tenanted sector and agriculture as a whole. The review must provide an opportunity for all those involved in agriculture to have a say – including those looking to come into the sector – and must look at all issues rather than overly focusing on one area.”