South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth has welcomed the launch today (20 July) of Scotland’s Towns Partnership ‘Scotland Loves Local’ campaign urging people to think local first as more shops, pubs and restaurants re-open.

However, the local MSP has warned that more support from the UK and Scottish Government is needed to ensure local retailers weather the economic downturn facing the area.

South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth said: “As more and more shops, pubs and restaurants open their doors, I welcome any campaign to urge people to think local and buy from the small firms who went above and beyond for their customers during the pandemic. Those who were able to stay open stepped up to the mark, changing the way they worked and providing people with the essentials that they desperately needed. However, many had to close for months, so it would be too easy to forget just what is on offer in our town centres across the region. That is why we should re-discover our town centres and give them the support they need more than ever.

“While a shop local campaign will help, we know that as the recession bites, this will be a difficult period for many local families when it comes to spending. It is vital that the UK and Scottish Governments, along with our new Enterprise Agency, do more to help local businesses get through the economic downturn we face and ensure our local shops survive what will be a tough time.”

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