1.1 The Scottish Government is committed to putting, and keeping, in place all necessary measures to continue to address the on-going coronavirus pandemic.
1.2 The Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020 and the Coronavirus (Scotland) (No.2) Act 2020 introduced measures deemed to be essential at the time of the coronavirus outbreak in Scotland in 2020. The Acts are required to respond to the set of specific circumstances resulting from the pandemic and are therefore time limited. The Acts are due to expire on 31 March 2021.
1.3 In addition to being time limited, the Government has also made clear it will retain and use the provisions in the Acts only for as long as they are necessary. As a result, where it has been possible to do so, provisions in the Acts have been suspended or expired when they have either fulfilled their purpose or the Scottish Government has listened to compelling views supporting change.
1.4 This Statement of Reasons sets out why the Scottish Government believes it is necessary and appropriate to extend Part 1 of both Acts beyond 31 March to 30 September 2021. While details on specific measures are contained in section 6, a summary of all the Government's recommendations is set out in section 7.