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Scottish Chambers Response to UK Budget

17th March 2020

Commenting on the UK Budget by the Chancellor, Dr Liz Cameron OBE, Chief Executive of the Scottish Chambers of Commerce said:

“Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s budget brings some relief for businesses in the face of coronavirus impact as well as further Barnett consequentials for Scotland.’’

“Some of the investment announcements in the Budget are particularly welcome, such as the £5bn for broadband connectivity and the Coronavirus business interruption loan scheme, these will benefit Scottish businesses.’’

“We urgently need the Scottish Government to invest any extra funds into business support and boosting the economy, which faces huge challenges in the coming weeks and months. The Scottish Chamber Network is ready to work with Scottish Government on how these funds are best used in order to protect jobs and businesses.’’

“In the first instance, we call on the Scottish Government to support small businesses by immediately adapting the Small Business Bonus scheme to match the chancellor’s pledges of support for small companies in England. And to consider also suspending rates bills for retail, leisure and hospitality firms in Scotland as the UK Government have announced.’’

“Unless mitigated, the effect of a coronavirus pandemic in the coming weeks – coupled with ongoing uncertainty in other areas such as Brexit – risk heaping long term damage to the Scottish economy, leading to further underperformance in terms of GDP growth and productivity which our businesses and people can ill afford.

"Scotland needs investment in better transport infrastructure and swift reductions in the cost of doing business.’’

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