Alex Salmond has faced fresh questions over his relationship with Rupert Murdoch the day after his appearance at the Leveson Inquiry.
Labour leader Johann Lamont accused the First Minister of being "Rupert Murdoch's lackey" and claimed he had lobbied on behalf of the media mogul in return for the Scottish Sun's support at the 2011 Holyrood election.
Mr Salmond retorted by claiming he had acted to protect jobs and investment in Scotland, where BSkyB has 35 per cent of its global workforce.
The heated exchange at First Minister's Questions revolved around an email from News Corporation's director of public affairs, Frederic Michel, which appeared to show Mr Salmond was prepared to intervene on the company's behalf during its bid to take over BSkyB.
The email, sent to News Corporation chief James Murdoch, stated: "I met with Alex Salmond's adviser today. He will call Hunt whenever we need him to."
Ms Lamont said Robert Jay QC, counsel to the Leveson Inquiry, had "put forward a compelling case that the First Minister appeared to be lobbying on Rupert Murdoch's behalf in return for the support of The Sun."
She said: "Isn't it the truth that Alex Salmond became Rupert Murdoch's lackey not to create Scottish jobs but in an attempt to keep his own?"
Mr Salmond insisted that "jobs and investment were the priority of this government", pointing out that BSkyB was an important employer in Scotland.
He quoted James Murdoch's evidence to the inquiry, in which Mr Murdoch said the takeover would mean "an increase in operations in Scotland, where technical support and IT service centres are located for British Sky Broadcasting".
News Corporation eventually dropped its bid for BSkyB after the phone-hacking scandal broke last year.
Ms Lamont pressed the First Minister further on the issue, claiming that Mr Murdoch had not given any guarantees that jobs would be created or safeguarded in Scotland.
She said: "You seem to have taken him entirely at his own bidding. You have not asked Scottish Government officials. You have not asked Scottish Enterprise. Mr Murdoch says it so it must be true. Meaningless assertion after meaningless assertion.
"As Robert Jay said yesterday, there was, at the very least, a perception of cosiness between the First Minister and Rupert Murdoch and nothing the First Minister said changes that fact.
"Isn't it the truth that Alex Salmond became Rupert Murdoch's lackey not to create Scottish jobs but in an attempt to keep his own?"
Mr Salmond said that the Labour leader's interpretation of the matter "doesn't seem to meet with the general interpretation of what was said".
He added: "The first responsibility of this Government is not for competition policy: that lies with Westminster; nor is it for plurality in the press: that also lies with with Westminster. The responsibility of this Government, the statutory responsibility, is for jobs and investment for Scotland.
"This is the priority of this Government. This is what we fight for every day of every week."