An MSP has called for an economic “shot in the arm” to support jobs and businesses in the region, following a report on the impact of Covid-19.
Highlands and Islands MSP Rhoda Grant said the Scottish and UK governments must “sit up and pay attention” after warnings that the region’s economy could decrease by as much as £2.6 billion this year due to the pandemic.
The Highlands and Islands Enterprise report, titled The impact of Covid-19 on the Highlands and Islands, also suggests unemployment in the region increased faster than the rest of Scotland.
Ms Grant said the report made “grim reading” and showed the region was one of the worst hit areas economically.
“With increased and rapidly growing unemployment due to the nature of the region’s economy which relies heavily on tourism and outdoor recreation, it’s clear that the economy of the Highlands and Islands will need a shot in the arm if we are to turn around the worrying trend of job losses and economic downturn,” she added.
Ms Grant called on governments to invest to protect jobs, businesses and the region’s economic prosperity.