Dickson welcomes long-awaited business support schemes

COVID-19 Economy Stewart Dickson Tourism Hospitality

Alliance Economy Spokesperson, Stewart Dickson MLA, has welcomed the launch of two Department for the Economy Businesses Support Schemes to help local tourism and hospitality firms with some of the pressures of the Covid-19 Pandemic.

The Bed and Breakfast, Guest House and Guest Accommodation Scheme, and the Large Tourism and Hospitality Business Support Scheme were launched this week, and will provide grants to businesses to help them with overheads, during this period of very low demand as a result of Covid-19.

Mr Dickson said: “Hospitality and tourism businesses are in survival mode, the news of the continuation of lockdown until at least March, although necessary, will only add to the pressures they face. It is therefore welcome, after long delays, that these schemes are now being rolled out.

“Unfortunately, the support levels available are likely to fall short of covering the losses businesses are facing. However, I hope that they can at least provide a lifeline to help cover the fixed costs that B&Bs, hotels and hospitality businesses face.

“Looking towards the future, it is clear that our vital tourism and hospitality businesses will also need further support to help with their recovery. To facilitate this however, the Department for the Economy must speed up the rollout of such schemes, as well as develop an ambitious Executive-wide plan to rebuild our economy.”