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‘More action’ needed on delivery charges

Shetland MSP Tavish Scott.

SHETLAND MSP Tavish Scott says there needs to be “less reviews and more action” on excessive delivery charges to rural Scotland after a UK government minister said she would launch an investigation into the issue.

Consumers minister Margot James said she will work with the Consumer Protection Partnership establish a review of research gained by Ofcom into the matter.

The news has been hailed as a victory by some campaigners who have been fighting against unfair surcharges for regions like the Highlands and Islands.

But Shetland MSP Tavish Scott said “we need less reviews and more action” on an issue which has frustrated locals for years.

The matter was raised last week by Moray MP Douglas Ross at Prime Minister’s Questions at Westminster, while a debate was held at the Scottish Parliament.

A recent Citizens Advice Scotland study showed that people in the Northern Isles are paying up to 50 per cent more on average to have packages sent to them.

Scott said it is imperative that the government encourages real change on the issue.

“Nothing new will come of yet another review of what we all know – that delivery companies rip us off,” he said.

“It is time the government took real action to right this unfair practice and give consumers a fair deal no matter where they live.”

The issue related to couriers charging over the odds for delivering items sent to rural locations.

One potential solution is thought to be creating a number of pick-up and drop-off locations.

Tory list MSP for the Highlands and Islands Jamie Halcro Johnston added: “This review by the UK government is welcome.

“This follows two years of work by Ofcom to collect data on the extent of unfair delivery charges – and we now know that action is taking place to protect consumers in northern Scotland.”

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