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Press Release: ‘Last Chance to Save Scottish Self-Catering’ Ahead of Parliament Vote

The Association of Scotland’s Self-Caterers (ASSC) has warned that an upcoming vote at Holyrood is the’ “last chance” to save the Scottish self-catering sector from a damaging new licensing scheme.

It is expected that on Wednesday, MSPs will decide whether to impose a restrictive licensing scheme on thousands of small businesses across Scotland amid what the association has previously described as a “perfect storm” of hardship experienced by the sector.

If the licensing order is passed, traditional self-caterers will have to stump up for expensive fees at a time during which many are already struggling with impact of COVID-19, as well as the prospect of control areas and a tourism levy making the picture even more dire.

Despite the ASSC’s repeated calls, ministers have so far failed to take their expert advice and copious evidence into account and now seem intent on destroying Scotland’s vital self-catering sector through over-regulation.

Former Cabinet Secretary for Tourism, Fergus Ewing MSP, has also weighed-in to the debate, branding his own government’s regulations as “arbitrary, irrational, and draconian” in a stinging attack on the misguided plans.

ASSC members have repeatedly called on the Scottish Government, and MSPs from all parties, to rally behind Scottish tourism and create an environment in which they can continue to help visitors, and Scots seeking a break, to have memory-making holidays rather than continuing this dangerous and damaging course of action.

Association of Scotland’s Self-Caterers Chief Executive, Fiona Campbell, said:

“This vote is nothing short of the last chance to save self-catering in Scotland which boosts the economy by £867m per year.

“We are at the end of the line and MSPs have a very clear choice to make; either they can support Scottish small businesses, or they can choose to cave into hearsay, unevidenced claims, and anti-tourism agitators.

“When MSPs push their voting buttons in parliament, they should know that they do so with the future of a vitally important Scottish industry at stake and we urge them to make the correct decision by throwing this out to protect jobs and livelihoods.


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