South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth has demanded answers from the Scottish and UK Government’s following news that two different Covid-19 tracing apps are currently being developed, one in Scotland and a different one south of the border.

The local MSP says using two different systems would be hugely problematic in regions such as the Borders and Dumfries and Galloway, where people frequently travel across the border for work, education and leisure.

Colin Smyth has warned that a co-ordinated approach between both Governments across the UK is vital, particularly for border communities.

The local MSP has also highlighted specific issues relating to Dumfries and Galloway and the Borders. In normal times, around 4,000 people in Dumfries and Galloway alone travel to Cumbria for work, education, health and leisure.

Colin Smyth said: “Right now I am urgently seeking clarification from the Scottish and UK Governments about how two separate Covid-19 track and trace apps would work for people in my constituency who frequently travel between England and Scotland.

“There are serious practical issues for the thousands of people who live in Dumfries and Galloway and the Scottish Borders but who travel to Cumbria and Northumberland on a regular basis for work, education, health and leisure.

“While I understand we are in the early stages of development for both tracing apps, it is vital that there is a coherent approach. I am once again calling on both governments to bring forward the correct policy and the correct technology to ensure that those living in border areas are not put at risk.

“Right now, there are two different apps being discussed and it is unclear how both tools would work together.”

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