Commenting after the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak MP gave a statement to the House of Commons Moray MP Douglas Ross said:
“This has been the most difficult time for individuals and businesses, here in Moray and across the UK. In just two months our economy has contracted by 25%, the same level it has grown by over the last 18 years.
“That puts in perspective the scale of the challenge we all face as we move on from the health crisis to the economic one.
“The Chancellor has announced further support of almost £30 billion including funding for greener homes, support for employers who have furloughed staff and opportunities for young people to get into employment.
“One of the hardest hit sectors locally here in Moray has been hospitality and I’m delighted they will all benefit from a huge reduction in VAT from 20% to just 5% over the next six months. This has been called for by the industry and the UK Government has responded.
“We need people to be supporting our hotels, B&Bs, restaurants and tourist attractions and I hope this move will encourage people back and supporting our local businesses.
“It was also welcome to hear about the cut in stamp duty which means with immediate effect in England no stamp duty will be paid on properties up to £500,000 until the end of March next year.
“In Scotland, however, this is an area that is overseen by the Scottish Government and early indications are they will not follow the UK Government’s lead. This would be damaging for our property market here in Scotland and those buying and selling properties here compared to other parts of the UK. I’m urging the SNP Government in Edinburgh to reconsider their stance and make Scotland as attractive as other parts of the UK for people to move to and buy a property.
“Throughout this crisis, we have seen billions of pounds invested by the UK Government and today’s announcement continues that significant support. Official figures have shown the least well off in society have been supported the most and this additional investment shows the priority of the UK Government is to get the country back up and running, our economy recovering and our businesses returning to normal as avital part of Moray life.”
Chancellor Rishi Sunak added: “Since this crisis started, our wide-ranging package of support for Scotland has protected more than 620,000 jobs, thousands of businesses and paid £425 million to self-employed people.
“Today I’ve set out our plan to protect, create and support jobs across Scotland – to level up opportunity, safely reopen our economy and strengthen the Union.
“We’re investing £800m through the Barnett formula, giving Scotland the funds to create green news jobs. And we’re protecting the thousands of existing jobs in the hospitality sector with a cut to VAT and the Eat Out to Help Out scheme.”