Covid-19 cases in Aberdeenshire and Aberdeen City will continue to be monitored ahead of any decision on further restrictions for the region.
Mr Swinney led today’s Scottish Government briefing where he confirmed 41 more deaths and 966 people who have tested positive in the past 24 hours.
Of the new cases, 258 are in Greater Glasgow and Clyde, 166 in Lanarkshire, 117 in Lothian.
Monitoring cases in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire
When asked if further restrictions will be imposed on the city and Aberdeenshire, Mr Swinney said: “We are motioning those cases very closely and the data indicates there is a greater problem in Aberdeenshire rather than Aberdeen city.
“But what we’re exploring very closely and what we have asked for further work for this to be undertaken yesterday is to try and identify the degree to which individual outbreaks, for example, meat or fish processing factories, they are inflating the position within the Aberdeenshire area.”
He added that the investigation will look to determine how these cases might be “flowing into community transmission”.
Mr Swinney said the government has to be “satisfied” that community transmission is not a “significant threat”.
Prof Jason Leitch added: “Aberdeen City is a little bit of a mixed picture.
“If you just look at the last week of data, the number of cases is down 29% but has increased in four of the seven days.
“So, it’s important to look at the time of the prevalence of this virus. In terms of the test positivity, it has decreased from 5% to 3.7%.
“It’s not universal good news, in Aberdeenshire, everything is up.
“The case level is 21% up in the last seven days, and there have been increases in six of the last seven days.
“And test positivity has gone up to 5.2% from 4.3%.”
He emphasised that other factors will be taken into account during the investigation undertaken in the local authority.
The public can expect an update on the coronavirus level system’s data on Tuesday.
No change to overseas travel quarantine list
Mr Swinney also announced there will be no changes to Scotland’s quarantine list for overseas travel.
He said: “Very often on a Friday, we provide an update on the quarantine exemption list.
“Following our usual risk assessments, I can confirm that the Scottish Government has not made any change to that list this week.
“As you may be aware, the UK Government last night announced a number of changes to the quarantine rules in England.
“Those changes exempt certain categories of people working in certain sectors from the requirement to self-isolate.
“I want to emphasise that these are changes that apply only in England and that they do not apply here in Scotland.
“The quarantine requirements in this country are unchanged.
“Anyone travelling to Scotland from a place that is not on the exemption list will be required to self-isolate for 14 days upon their return.”
Urging people against unnecessary overseas travel, he added: “The Scottish Government will assess the need for any further exemptions at our next review of the international travel regulations, which is to be completed by the 14th of December.”
Rates relief for nurseries
Deputy First Minister John Swinney has announced the extension of rates relief for nurseries.
The announcement means 100% relief on non-domestic rates for nurseries until at least June 2023.
The relief had been due to end in March 2021.
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.”
He added: “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.”