A GLASGOW production company has criticised Rishi Sunak for saying he will proceed with the sale of Channel 4 if he becomes prime minister.

The former chancellor – who is in a leadership race with foreign secretary Liz Truss – has said he will continue with plans to privatise the broadcaster, a move which has already been condemned by the creative industry and politicians.

Alan Clements, managing director of Two Rivers Media in Glasgow - which has made shows for Channel 4 - said Boris Johnson’s resignation was a great chance for fresh faces to step forward and do away with the “damaging” policy.

But he was instead disappointed to see Sunak’s continued support for the sale of “one of the most successful organisations”.

Clements said: "This was the perfect opportunity to drop a policy that will be very damaging for Scotland’s creative industry.

“At a time of national crisis, with the highest level of inflation for decades, why would a Government spend precious Parliamentary time messing with one of the most successful organisations for spreading wealth and opportunity?

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"Privatisation could cause a hit of over £86 million a year on spending in the nations and regions — why would a new Prime Minister continue to put businesses at risk like that?"

Clements branded the policy as “cultural vandalism” earlier this year and claimed it would be an “existential threat” to small independent production companies like his.

The UK Government – which owns the broadcaster – intends to take Channel 4 out of public ownership claiming this is holding it back from competing with streaming services like Netflix.

The National: Alan Clements Alan Clements

Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries – who has backed Truss - said selling it to a private owner would give it "the tools and freedom to flourish and thrive as a public service broadcaster long into the future".

Truss has not said anything publicly on the policy which was set out in April, but she is believed to be supportive of the sale.

A campaign spokeswoman for Sunak said: “Rishi will take forward Channel 4’s privatisation.

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Privatisation will help Channel 4 to thrive in an age where they are also competing with Netflix, Amazon, Apple and many more.”

Plans for Channel 4’s privatisation had been expected to be published before parliament finished for the summer recess. However, the legislation was delayed by legal drafting issues and Johnson’s resignation.

It is expected to be ready when Parliament returns in the autumn.