Motion ref. S5M-22948
VAT Retail Export Scheme
Submitted by: Daniel Johnson, Edinburgh Southern, Scottish Labour.
Date lodged: Monday, October 5, 2020
Supported by: Sarah Boyack, Alex Cole-Hamilton, Kenneth Gibson, Iain Gray, James Kelly, Bill Kidd, Richard Lyle, Lewis Macdonald, Ruth Maguire, Stuart McMillan, Alex Neil, Alex Rowley, Anas Sarwar, Colin Smyth, David Torrance
That the Parliament expresses its alarm at the decision to end the VAT Retail Export Scheme, commonly known as tax-free shopping, at the end of 2020, it understands without any assessment of the direct and wider impact on the retail, hospitality and tourism sectors in Edinburgh and across Scotland; notes that visitors to Edinburgh and Scotland from international destinations such as China, the United States and other countries make a valuable contribution to the economy, including through the purchase of iconic Scottish goods and holidaying here; believes that the UK would be the only country in Europe not to operate tax-free shopping if the scheme ends; acknowledges that the Scottish Retail Consortium, Scottish Tourism Alliance, the Essential Edinburgh business improvement district and others have voiced their concerns regarding the end of tax-free shopping, and calls on UK Ministers to reconsider or postpone the ending of this tax relief until a full impact assessment is undertaken and discussions are held with the industry on possible alternative solutions.