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Trump 'lured by first ministers'

US businessman Donald Trump has complained he was "lured" into investing in Scotland by two first ministers.

Mr Trump said he was assured by Alex Salmond and Jack McConnell before him that an offshore wind turbine development would not be built near his golf resort on the Aberdeenshire coast although both politicians deny they gave assurances.

But Mr Trump said: "What they did is they lured me in. I spent this money and now I might regret it.

"I think other people that want to invest in Scotland are watching me, and they're watching what happened and I think they're going to say, 'We're not going to invest in Scotland'."

Mr Trump made the comments in a dramatic appearance before a Scottish Parliament committee probing the Scottish Government's renewable energy targets when he warned that the drive for wind farms will "destroy" tourism, claimed climate change is not man-made and said Scottish renewable targets are "phoney".

He claimed to be an expert on tourism and opinion polls, and rejected suggestions that he was using opposition to the offshore development as a face-saving exercise to pull out.

Despite being asked to discuss the SNP administration's energy targets, Mr Trump repeatedly focused on his fight to stop an 11-turbine offshore test centre in Aberdeen Bay.

Asked to point to evidence that wind farms will destroy tourism, Mr Trump declared: "I am the evidence."

In his opening address on energy targets, he told MSPs: "In my opinion, it is one of the most serious problems that Scotland will have or has had" and offered support to technologies such as wave power, but warned: "Wind turbines, made in China, are going to be the destruction - almost a total destruction - of your tourism industry."

The Scottish Government wants renewable energy sources to meet the existing demand for electricity by 2020.


From Belfast Telegraph