Scottish businesses more pessimistic about Covid than rest of UK

Some three-quarters of Scottish businesses believe that Covid will negatively impact their business in the next 12 months, slightly higher than the rest of the UK.

Scottish firms are also more concerned than any other part of the UK when it comes to supply chain links with the EU, should they be disrupted post Brexit, according to the latest Santander trade barometer. Picture: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images
Scottish firms are also more concerned than any other part of the UK when it comes to supply chain links with the EU, should they be disrupted post Brexit, according to the latest Santander trade barometer. Picture: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Scottish firms are also more concerned than any other part of the UK when it comes to supply chain links with the EU, should they be disrupted post Brexit, according to the latest Santander trade barometer.

Graham Silcock, regional director for Scotland and Northern Ireland at Santander UK, said: “It’s perhaps not surprising to see that such a high proportion of Scottish businesses are concerned about the impact of the pandemic.

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“The coming months will prove critical in terms of readjusting and recovering. While there are a number of issues being faced by business at present, not least the impending interim trading arrangements with the EU, Scottish firms have always shown their resilience and adaptability, and this is proving more important than ever in what has been a difficult year.”

The report suggested that 63 per cent of businesses are concerned about an economic slowdown.

In terms of the impact of Brexit, Scottish business has been hardest hit by Brexit across the board, as it planned the least amount of investment in three areas – hiring new staff, product development and domestic and international expansion – out of all the regions across the UK.

Markets, where Scottish firms see most growth potential in the next year are: the US (35 per cent), Norway (25 per cent) and Australia (23 per cent).

The bank said it was providing more detailed guidance on Brexit-related issues, tailored to the requirements of individual businesses.

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