The Scottish Beer & Pub Association (SBPA) has called on the Scottish Government to save thousands of pubs and other hospitality businesses by ‘at least’ matching the level of economic support the Welsh Government has committed to their pubs.
Currently, the economic support afforded to the average Scottish pub stretches to just £2,700 for the six-week Christmas period, whilst the average pub in Wales will receive £11,300. Some pubs in Wales will be eligible for upwards of £17,000 in grant support, whilst Scottish pubs will struggle to survive this Christmas.
It is also understood that there will be no cap on multiple operators in Wales, something which the Scottish Government has included on previous grants. This resulted in many SMEs in the hospitality sector receiving reduced levels of support, putting more jobs at risk.
Commenting, CEO of the Scottish Beer & Pub Association, Emma McClarkin, said:
“As a sector, hospitality businesses are on their knees and are desperately crying out for meaningful economic support. Whilst any grant is of course welcome, the current level of funding does not come close to covering fixed costs, even when closed. In order to support jobs, the Scottish Government needs to at least match the support offered to pub in Wales.
“Every day that passes without further economic support means that more pubs will stay closed for good and more jobs will be lost as a result. Pubs in Wales have been given a lifeline which we hope will now see most of their pubs reach the other side of the pandemic. Meanwhile, pubs in Scotland face devastation.
“The Scottish Government cannot delay any further and must now announce more support for the hospitality sector, which provides over 100,000 jobs in Scotland. They must also support the jobs of those workers that are employed by multiple operators. The current restriction on grant support means that hundreds of jobs are being put at additional risk, for no reason. Some pubs, if owned by multiple operators will receive absolutely nothing.
“If the Welsh Government can support hospitality jobs and businesses with this level of support, the Scottish Government must be able to provide at least equitable support. Without it, thousands of pubs likely stay closed for good.”