Northern Isles MSPs, Tavish Scott and Liam McArthur have again called on the Scottish Government to increase support available under the Air Discount Scheme. In response to parliamentary questions from Mr McArthur, the Transport Minister, Derek Mackay MSP has confirmed that this option is being actively considered.
This latest development comes as a petition demanding action from the Scottish Government to reduce the air fares has been gaining support from those attending agricultural shows in Orkney this week.
Commenting, Orkney MSP Liam McArthur said:
“While improving the reliability of our lifeline airline services must remain a priority, ensuring they are affordable is also critically important. The obvious way of helping achieve this would be to increase the support available under ADS.
“Constituents appear to agree and have been adding their names to our petition. Now the Minister has provided formal confirmation that he is looking seriously at this option. I welcome that news but want to see him go further.
“When Tavish and I met Derek Mackay before the summer recess, he asked for a little time to meet with stakeholders and consider his options. That was fair enough, but we now need a decision from the Minister”.
Shetland MSP, Tavish Scott added: We need concrete action to help reduce fares. Higher ADS would be good as would reduced landing charges at government owned airports. The Fair Fares community campaign now needs to see a positive response from the government.