THE Scottish Government says Grant Shapps's claim that Scotland has delayed plans to relax overseas travel restrictions was "completely unfounded".

Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf accused the UK Government of failing to keep Scottish ministers fully updated on the plans.

People arriving in the UK - including returning residents - are currently required to self-isolate for a fortnight to reduce the spread of coronavirus.

The UK Government is expected to announce a list of countries which will be exempt from the restrictions this week, but so far details have not been published.

READ MORE: Air bridges: Grant Shapps blames Scotland and Wales for delays

This weekend The National reported that news of the "air bridge" plan had come as a surprise to the Scottish Government when it was reported in the media.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon criticised the UK Government for failing to consult her ahead of announcing proposed changes to the regime.

On Monday, she said she wanted to "take a bit of time to consider the public health impact" of the plan and the evidence underpinning it.

With the proposals expected to be set out on Friday, Shapps clashed with a senior SNP MP in the Commons.

Shapps told SNP transport spokesman Gavin Newlands: "I'd appreciate his help in ensuring that air bridges can get going as quickly as possible.

"I'm very keen to get the devolved administrations, including the Scottish Government, on board so we can get this thing announced."

He urged another SNP MP, Philippa Whitford, to "ask the Scottish Government to join with us in ensuring we can have these air bridges in place nationwide as quickly as possible".

Scotland's Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf hit back at Shapps' comments and claimed the UK Government had repeatedly redrawn the list of countries under consideration without consulting the devolved administrations.

"This suggestion is completely unfounded," he said.

"We have sought, as far as possible, a four-nations approach to this issue, but such a policy requires meaningful consultation by the UK Government - something which has so far been lacking."

In talks with Health Secretary Matt Hancock last night, the devolved administrations were presented with the latest proposed list of air bridge countries which had been "significantly changed" from previous versions.

"Further information, including yet more revision to the list of countries, was not provided until after the meeting had ended," Yousaf added.

"I made clear that - as the First Minister has already indicated - we must be able to consider the public health impact of these changed proposals, as well as the data and evidence underpinning them, before deciding on and announcing any changes.

"I hope we will be able to do that within the coming days."

As many as 75 countries could be exempted from the quarantine restrictions when the list is finally published, reports have suggested.

The list will lift the Foreign Office ban on non-essential travel to nearly all EU destinations, the British territories including Bermuda and Gibraltar, as well as Turkey, Thailand, Australia and New Zealand, the Daily Telegraph reported.

All 75 have been judged sufficiently low-risk destinations based on their Covid-19 situation.

But Downing Street played down the reports ahead of the official announcement.