Thank you so much your interest in this crucial industry. Hospitality businesses are at the heart of communities across Scotland – bringing people together, supporting jobs and the economy, and showcasing Scotland’s world-class food and drink.
The pandemic and the cost-of-living crisis have made conditions extremely challenging for the industry, compounded by the past decisions of the SNP to not replicate business rates relief elsewhere in the UK as we recovered by the pandemic. Going forward it is unacceptable for good businesses with a bright future are not getting the support that they need.
Scottish Labour has a plan to change this. Earlier this year, Anas Sarwar launched Scottish Labour’s Economic Growth Advisory Board to help formulate a plan for economic growth. The Board’s focuses include Brand Scotland, food and drink, and tourism – all of which will impact directly on hospitality. Members of the board, which include representatives from the food and drink sector, will bring deep insight, knowledge and understanding to our work so that we produce a growth plan that meets the needs of businesses and delivers for Scotland.
We will develop actions that cover:
- Skills – ensuring hospitality has enough workers to thrive and people have the skills needed to support and grow our hospitality businesses
- Investment – making sure that the right business support is reaching the businesses that need it and have the potential to grow
- Infrastructure – ensuring Scotland’s infrastructure supports our food and drink and tourism sectors, making sure hospitality businesses are accessible, and making hospitality a great career anywhere in Scotland.
We are also committed in Scotland and at a UK level to scrapping business rates for a fairer system to reduce the burden on high street premises and not stand in the way of firms who want to expand.
Scottish Labour is proud of our hospitality businesses, and we will take action to give them the support they need to thrive, holding the current Scottish Government to account when they fail to do so.
Please keep in touch and follow our work with the Advisory Board to hear more about what Scottish Labour will do differently for the sector.