Covid-19 (Impact on Tourism)

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 11th March 2020.

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Photo of Fergus Ewing Fergus Ewing Scottish National Party

All those things will require to be considered very carefully in due course. Claire Baker is correct to say that the tourism industry suffers earlier than other industries. That is principally because of cancellations, many of which are not really because of the facts; rather, they are because of perceptions and media reports. I have already received, as members across the chamber will have, many expressions of concern, especially from small tourism businesses that are particularly vulnerable.

We are taking the issue very seriously and we will come back to it. I have fed in the concerns to SGoRR—the Scottish Government resilience room—which is our equivalent of COBRA, and I will continue to do that.

At the moment, the most important thing is that all of us listen to, act on and respond to the messaging that is put out by the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport, the chief medical officer and others in order to best minimise the consequences of a very serious virus.