SELF-catering business in Edinburgh are being sent into a “perfect storm” of damaging regulations, the Association of Scotland’s Self-Caterers has said.
The warning from the trade body representing the sector comes as City of Edinburgh Council prepares to consider evidence submissions for a short-term let control zone for businesses in the city.
The ASSC has made its submission to the Council and has expressed its hope that councillors will take it into serious consideration.
Despite not being anti-regulation, the association has warned that the combination of City of Edinburgh Council’s suggested city-wide control area and the Scottish Government’s impending licencing scheme threatens to “throttle the life” out of small businesses across the area.
Rather than impose further damaging restrictions, the trade body has argued that policymakers should focus on creating a business-friendly environment to encourage post-COVID economic recovery in the city.
Self-catering and short-term lets generate £70million each year for the Edinburgh economy and play a vital role in the capital’s world-renowned tourism offering.
The association also criticised policymakers for so far failing to take evidence-based decisions and for ignoring the detailed testimony of experts in the sector.
Throughout the public debate on regulating self-catering, the ASSC has consistently argued for sensible, proportionate, and effective regulations and has presented detailed proposals for a mandatory registration scheme that works for all.
Association of Scotland’s Self-Caterers Chief Executive, Fiona Campbell, said:
“Hardworking and conscientious self-catering businesses are facing nothing short of a perfect storm of regulations, which threatens to derail our businesses and cost us our livelihoods.
“If put in place, a city-wide control zone and a licencing scheme would throttle the life out of our sector and cause irreparable damage to Scotland’s tourism offering.
“However, there is still time for policymakers to do the right thing by listening to our sector and create an environment that will help us survive, recover, and thrive in the post-COVID environment.”