THE Scottish Licensed Trade Association (SLTA) has welcomed today’s announcement by the Scottish Government after discussions between Government officials and industry groups, including the SLTA, to provide extra support funding, mainly for those in the licensed hospitality sector who fell through the cracks in earlier support packages.
Commenting on the announcement, SLTA managing director Colin Wilkinson said: “The SLTA welcomes this additional support funding aimed at those in the licensed hospitality sector who did not qualify for any earlier support grants introduced since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“We also welcome the extra support for the sector in general after branding the package of support announced earlier this month by Cabinet Secretary for Finance Kate Forbes, as bad as hearing a ‘Christmas cracker joke’.
“However, these additional financial support measures have been marred by the earlier-than-expected lockdown payback measures that the industry had been anticipating.
“These new constraints will have an even greater negative impact on the sector and those in the supply chain at this time as we are losing any resemblance of the vitally important Christmas and New Year trade.
“In light of this development the Scottish Government will need to urgently review the provision of ongoing, realistic financial compensation if the sector and the staff that it employs are to be here after spring 2021 and part Scotland’s economic recovery.
“We remember Christmas past, we are suffering Christmas present, and who knows what Christmas future will bring. With the right support, delivered now, businesses might just survive in 2021 to once again provide the festive celebrations that we will miss so dearly.”