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Sunday, 26 August, 2001, 15:42 GMT 16:42 UK
SNP takes policy message on tour
John Swinney
The SNP leader said it was time for change
Scottish National Party leader John Swinney is embarking on a four-week tour of the country starting on Monday.

A schedule of visits, party meetings, business events and campaigning has been timed in the run-up to the party's annual conference in Dundee.

The tour begins with visits to Dundee, Rosyth and Perth, with the focus on the Holyrood parliamentary elections in 2003.

Mr Swinney said: "The SNP wants to create a better Scotland by using the current powers of the Scottish Parliament more imaginatively than New Labour and the Liberal Democrats - and we will not wait for London to give us the go-ahead.

In order to create the best Scotland we must take on all the powers of independence

John Swinney

"In order to create the best Scotland, however, we must take on all the powers of independence, and only then will we give ourselves the maximum ability to change our country for the better.

"I will therefore be developing this thinking further in a number of speeches that I will be making during a tour of the eight electoral regions in Scotland."

He said he would be listening to the views of his party ahead of the Scottish parliamentary elections while campaigning in council by-elections.

Mr Swinney said he also hopes to strengthen his party's appeal to business over the coming weeks.

See also:

16 Jun 01 | Scotland
SNP condemns voting change plan
15 Jun 01 | Scotland
Voting system change mooted
24 Nov 99 | Scotland
Rift grows between MSPs
14 Nov 99 | Scotland
MSPs fight over status
01 Jun 98 | Talking Politics
The Scotland Bill
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