Scottish Liberal Democrat treasury spokesperson Christine Jardine has today warned that proposals to abolish the VAT Retail Export Scheme and airside extra-statutory concession supporting tax free shopping would have an immense impact on Scotland’s international competitiveness and put the continued survival of airports and retailers at risk.
Speaking as a coalition of industry figures including the heads of the Scottish Chamber of Commerce, Essential Edinburgh and UK Hospitality warned that the measures would “have a major impact on businesses which are already struggling to stay afloat”, Ms Jardine said:
“Scotland is one of the world’s great tourist destinations. But it will not stay that way if the Chancellor continues to pull the rug out from under businesses who are already struggling.
“You would struggle to assemble a broader and more authoritative coalition of voices urging the Treasury to change course.
“These measures will not just hit airlines and airports who are struggling to stay afloat but have an immense impact on jobs in tourism and retail too if they go ahead.
“Rishi Sunak needs to drop these proposals now before good businesses slip beneath the waterline.”