Select Committee on Liaison First Report

Annex B



The Government Response to the Committee, on 10 April 2000, reported that all of the recommendations relating to devolved matters had been taken into account in the Executive's new strategy for Scottish tourism, published on 14 February. In the period since, considerable action has been taken to move implementation forward.

Significant progress has been made on the development of e-commerce through the major tourism IT project,, previously known as Ossian. E-commerce for accommodation providers was introduced in the summer. The Scottish Tourist Board is working to develop a joint venture with the private sector. The new partnership, amongst other actions, will provide a contact centre and a single telephone number for Scottish tourism. These will be in place by early summer 2001. It will also develop e-commerce for other sectors of the tourism industry such as visitor attractions.

A new skills group has been established, which will assist the industry to meet the Government's targets for Modern Apprenticeships and Individual Learning Accounts. The new Group - Tourism People - is chaired by Peter Lederer, Managing Director of Gleneagles Hotel. Its membership is drawn mainly from the tourism sector and it has direct links with other initiatives such as the national Springboard initiative which promotes tourism as a career. The Group is currently preparing an action plan that aims to tackle the major skills problems inherent in the industry today.

A team of quality advisers has been established within the STB. They will be able to provide assistance to businesses on a one-to-one basis. Accommodation businesses in membership of the quality assurance scheme are required to be more transparent in respect of charges for accommodation and phone calls.

New marketing campaigns have been undertaken by the STB, aimed particularly at the spring period. An action plan to develop golf tourism has been published and is being acted upon. Similar action plans are being prepared in respect of genealogy and cultural tourism.

An independent management review of the Scottish Tourist Board reported on 3 November. It recommends widespread change to the structure of that organisation and better linkages with partners, in particular, with the Enterprise Networks and the 14 Area Tourist Boards. A new Chief Executive is to be appointed. One of the most immediate changes will be a name change to Visit Scotland.

November 2000

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