Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
The Union is working.
The UK Government's Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) has saved 736,500 jobs across Scotland, including 69,400 in Edinburgh. This whopping figure accounts for 28% of all employees in Scotland's capital.
This should not be seen as just an arbitrary number. It represents a roof over a family's head. It represents food on the table. It represents stability in a time of turbulence.
Lothian MSP, Miles Briggs, said: “Lockdown in response to the outbreak of Covid-19 has been challenging for businesses throughout Edinburgh and the Lothians. The uncertainty caused by this pandemic has put tens of thousands of jobs at risk, which the job retention scheme has managed to make more secure. It is remarkable that the UK government has been able to protect so many jobs during this pandemic. We must now focus on getting the economy moving again so that Edinburgh and the Lothians can start recovering from the Covid-19 outbreak. I have called on SNP Ministers to establish a Recovery Taskforce for Edinburgh and the Lothians.”
This Conservative Government's financial support has been tremendous and reinforces the value of the Union to Scots. As an integral part of the Union, Scotland benefits hugely from being a part of the sixth largest economy in the world. The UK Treasury reacted with speed and precision to the financial instability brought on by the pandemic - softening the impact on famillies across the nation. The Pound Sterling, once again, proved a source of real strength for Scotland and the United Kingdom. We still await confirmation from the SNP about which currency a Scotland would use if they separated us from the rest of the UK.
Lothian MSP, Gordon Lindhurst, said: "The sheer scale and rapidity of the response by the UK Government to the crisis faced by Scottish businesses in the COVID-19 pandemic demonstrates conclusively the importance of our place as part of the United Kingdom. Businesses throughout Edinburgh and the Lothians have required to adapt virtually overnight to the situation, which thankfully is now easing. They, their employees, customers, and indeed all of us are the beneficiaries of the Union which enables us to face challenges together as one."
Scottish Conservative candidate for Edinburgh Northern & Leith, Cllr Callum Laidlaw, said: "Edinburgh is a successful city but our focus on private sector employment in finance, tourism and hospitality has left us particularly exposed to the economic impact of the COVID pandemic. The Union and UK Conservative Government has delivered, protecting 17,200 jobs in Edinburgh North and Leith alone, but now it's time for Holyrood to deliver too. The Scottish Conservatives are calling for a long-term reduction in business rates and an end to the anti-English rhetoric that is dissuading UK visitors, both of which are crucial for our vital retail and hospitality industries to survive."
CJRS Statistics (July 2020)
Scotland: 736,500 jobs protected representing 30% of the working population.
Edinburgh: 69,400 (28%)
Edinburgh East: 15,100 (31%)
Edinburgh North & Leith: 17,200 (29%)
Edinburgh South: 10,000 (24%)
Edinburgh South West: 14,500 (28%)
Edinburgh West: 12,600 (27%)
Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS)
The Scottish Conservatives are the only Party in Scotland that will always support local businesses. The SNP have let down Scottish business with their response to this pandemic. The UK Treasury has provided the means for the self-employed across Edinburgh and the rest of the UK to claim financial support to help them through this difficult time.
SEISS (to June 30th)
Scotland: 155,000 claims made out of a possible 207,000 (75%)
Edinburgh: 15,000 individuals supported.
Edinburgh East: 3,500 (76%)
Edinburgh North & Leith: 3,700 (72%)
Edinburgh South: 2,400 (73%)
Edinburgh South West: 2,600 (75%)
Edinburgh West: 2,800 (77%)
For a further breakdown of figures from the CJRS and SEISS in Scotland and the UK as a whole please see the spreadsheets attached below.