Iain Gray MSP is backing calls for the Scottish Government to introduce a comprehensive system for testing air passengers on arrival, as well as direct support to the sector, in order to save thousands of jobs in the aviation sector.
At Holyrood today (Wednesday), Scottish Labour led a debate calling for ministers to secure a sustainable post-Covid future for a sector that has been thrown into crisis by the pandemic.
The Fraser of Allander Institute has predicted that proposed cuts in the Scottish civil aviation and aerospace engineering sectors may cause the loss of around 5,000 jobs in total in Scotland.
Iain Gray MSP said:
“Scotland’s aviation sector is among the industries hit the hardest by Covid-19, with many jobs already lost and thousands more now at risk as we approach the end of the furlough scheme.
“This will have a knock-on effect on our tourism sector, which is especially important for East Lothian, in the short and long terms, and we simply can’t afford to stand by and watch the sector collapse.”
Scottish Labour transport spokesperson Colin Smyth MSP said:
“Scottish Labour is calling the Scottish Government to work with the aviation sector and the relevant Trade Unions in Scotland to agree on a specific package of support for the industry.
“We are also calling for an urgent review of the existing quarantine system, which is clearly not fit for purpose. It’s time for the Scottish Government to introduce a robust regime of airport testing on arrival – with follow up testing at home.”