Orkney MSP Liam McArthur has today urged the Scottish Government to “walk the talk when it comes to island businesses”.
The call follows a survey of 275 island firms by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) that found 88% said they faced challenges that mainland businesses do not.
The report identifies transport and affordable housing as priorities. The FSB has submitted its research results to Holyrood's Rural Economy Committee in a call for action.
Commenting, Orkney MSP Liam McArthur said:
“Many businesses in Orkney have developed a hard earned reputation for quality and compete effectively on a nationally and international basis. This survey from the Federation of Small Businesses, however, helpfully highlights a number of the unique challenges faced by island businesses compared to their mainland counterparts.
“It will come as a surprise to no-one that transport is the challenge most often referred to by those responding to this survey. This serves to illustrate why the government’s decision to hike up freight costs is so potentially damaging.
“At a time when Ministers talk about their commitment to ‘island proofing’, they need to walk the talk when it comes to island businesses. This means doing more to address the issues flagged up in this timely report from the FSB”.
Notes to editors:
You can find the press release from the FSB here.