Glasgow Tourism Sector

– in the Scottish Parliament on 11th February 2021.

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Photo of Bob Doris Bob Doris Scottish National Party

8. To ask the Scottish Government how it is planning to support the tourism sector in Glasgow in 2021. (S5O-05016)

Photo of Fergus Ewing Fergus Ewing Scottish National Party

Glasgow, which Mr Doris represents, is a vibrant and welcoming city, and I look forward to encouraging the return of visitors to enjoy its many world-class attractions.

We understand the severe impact of the pandemic on tourism in our cities. We have provided a support package of almost £3 billion for businesses, including the tourism sector.

We are working closely with all our partners. That work includes the establishment of a city centre recovery group and a five-year investment plan for the sector, which will be developed by our enterprise agencies and VisitScotland.

Photo of Bob Doris Bob Doris Scottish National Party

It is likely that Glasgow will rely on tourists from across Scotland, rather than on international visitors, for much of this year.

In these challenging times, how will the Scottish Government support businesses in Glasgow that have been increasingly reliant on international tourism? The cabinet secretary has put some details on the record, but what more can be done?

Photo of Fergus Ewing Fergus Ewing Scottish National Party

The international sector has been hit especially hard. Glasgow has been successful in attracting visitors from around the world. Its success in areas such as business conferences is well recognised.

We are working hard with VisitScotland to pave the way for the recovery of the international market. We are also providing support for many of the key players, such as tour operators, which put people in the aeroplanes that bring them to Scotland. We are also investing to support hotels. The hotel recovery programme aims to support up to 3,000 jobs in that sector. Through the pivotal enterprise resilience fund, we awarded more than £8.9 million to hotels and other accommodation providers last year. Those are some of the elements of our support.

We hope that the efficacy of the vaccination programme here and worldwide will enable us to beat the virus. Once we have done that and have an international system for the reciprocal recognition of vaccine certification, I look forward to resuming international trade and custom, which are essential to our overall tourism offer and to the Glasgow economy.

The Deputy Presiding Officer:

That concludes portfolio questions.