Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has put his support behind a cross-party motion to provide a 12-month financial support package for the tourism industry. The motion, led by Mr Carmichael’s colleague, Cumbria MP Tim Farron, recognises the seasonal nature of the tourism sector and its position as one of the hardest-hit areas of the economy, and calls on the government to reflect this in its support.
Mr Carmichael said:
“Whether in the isles, in Cumbria or elsewhere, areas of the UK with distinctive and vibrant tourism offerings have been hit hard by the impact of coronavirus. Government measures should reflect this reality and the seasonal nature of the industry.
“We know that a short-term financial fix will not be sufficient for companies and self-employed people who rely on the summer trade to see them through the rest of the year. Even as restrictions begin to be lifted, travel and tourism will be some of the slowest industries to return to normal and so what may work for other sectors simply will not work here.
“Last week I called for a cut in tourism VAT to support regeneration of our vital tourism industry. If the government wants this industry to recover as strongly as possible then they should provide the incentives to do so.”