A TORY MSP from Greenock has welcomed an extension of business rates relief for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in Inverclyde throughout the next financial year.

Jamie Greene hailed the news after the UK Treasury allocated a further £1.1 billion in Covid-19 support funding to Scotland.

The Federation of Small Businesses says the decision to extend the relief period would help smaller firms survive.

Mr Greene said: "I am delighted that funding allocated by the UK Government will be used to give hundreds of businesses across Inverclyde breathing space at this difficult time.

"This is something I have been calling for the Scottish Government to do for months, on behalf of local firms who have had a horrendous year.

"However, Inverclyde’s economy is not out of the woods yet.

"Many businesses are still waiting on financial support from the Scottish Government which has been held back and it is vital that this urgently gets where it is needed."