Page last updated at 15:05 GMT, Thursday, 3 June 2010 16:05 UK

Ministerial statement on VisitScotland

Tourism Minister Jim Mather told MSPs personnel decisions at VisitScotland were a matter for the organisation's board and not for the Scottish government, on 3 June 2010.

Mr Mather was giving a ministerial statement following media reports which said VisitScotland's chief executive Philip Riddle was told he had lost the confidence of colleagues amid a "boardroom power struggle" at the quango.

Mr Riddle has since stood down from his role while he considers his future.

The tourism minister told the chamber tourism had been "resilient" in the face of the recession and the flight disruption caused by the Icelandic volcanic ash cloud.

Mr Mather was repeatedly asked about meetings between government ministers and the new VisitScotland chairman, Dr Mike Cantlay or Mr Riddle.

The minister reiterated all issues which related to VisitScotland staff were the responsibility of the board not Scottish ministers.

Later Finance Secretary John Swinney made a point of order to correct Mr Mather on his assertion during the ministerial statement that Mr Swinney had not spoken to VisitScotland chair Dr Mike Cantlay on Sunday May 31st.

Mr Swinney said he had indeed spoken with Dr Cantlay, on that date, about the newspaper report on VisitScotland.

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