Deputy First Minister John Swinney has announced the extension of rates relief for nurseries.
The move means 100% relief on non-domestic rates for nurseries until at least June 2023.
The relief began in April 2018 and had been due to end in March next year.
Speaking at the Scottish Government’s coronavirus briefing, Mr Swinney said: “The scheme provides full non-domestic rates relief for premises that are used entirely or primarily as day nurseries.
“This year alone is estimated to have saved eligible nurseries an average of £12,000.
“We hope this helps to ensure that childcare can remain as affordable as possible.
“Day nurseries, like so many businesses, face continuing financial pressures as a result of the pandemic.
“However, they play a critical part in supporting the learning and the development of young children, and they will also be especially important as our economy recovers from the crisis in allowing parents and carers to work, study, and to learn new skills.”
Children’s minister Maree Todd said: “Extending the nursery rates relief scheme will provide some welcome certainty to our day nurseries – especially at a time when many are feeling real financial pressures.
“Our childcare sector plays a vital role in our economy, supporting children’s development and helping parents to access employment, education or training. We have seen the critical importance of this during the pandemic.
“We will shortly announce a new date for when all eligible children will be entitled to 1,140 hours of high-quality care and learning – almost double the current statutory entitlement.
“I’m very pleased that in addition to the measures we’ve already taken, this further step will provide more certainty for the sector, while ensuring the benefits of the scheme are being felt by families across Scotland.”
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