Third Quarter Growth boosts Scottish Economy

Posted on 15 January, 2014 by Kirsten Kennedy

Scotland enjoyed a sixth consecutive quarter of growth in the third quarter of last year, it has been reported. Official estimates show economic growth of 0.7 per cent north of the border, with GDP increasing by 2.1 per cent on a year on year basis.


Construction, services and manufacturing played key roles in boosting Scotland’s fortunes, with growth of 0.7 per cent, 0.7 per cent and 0.6 per cent respectively between the beginning of July and the end of September.

In annual terms, this means that services has grown by 1.8 per cent, construction by 2.8 per cent and manufacturing by 3.0 per cent – demonstrating the positive effect upon business the economic recovery is having.

John Swinney, the Scottish government’s Finance Secretary, believes that the improvements within these three major sectors will lead to future stability and encourage more firms to initiate recruitment drives.

He says; “Today’s statistics show further strengthening in Scotland’s economy with the recovery accelerating, even against a backdrop of continuing economic challenges.

“Growth in Scotland’s economy has increased and strengthened over the last 18 months and this Scottish government will continue to support growth in key areas to boost Scotland’s success.

“The increase in continued growth in these sectors ensures that we can continue to help build sustainable economic growth for Scotland which will strengthen our economy and create jobs.”

This latest data could prove to be pivotal in Scotland’s bid for independence, as many critics have questioned the country’s ability to maintain a stable economy without assistance from Westminster.

However, many Scottish companies are worried that separating from the rest of the UK could negatively affect their dealings with suppliers and buyers south of the border, potentially slowing growth.

Alistair Carmichael, the Scottish Secretary, reinforced his belief that continued growth will be best achieved by Scotland remaining part of the UK.

He says; “Despite uncertain global conditions it is welcome news to see that Scotland’s economy has continued to grow into the second half of 2013.

“This government’s long term economic plan is working and Scotland’s economy is successful and stronger as part of the UK with its security, scale and influence.

“The UK government continues to work hard to create a stable platform for sustained growth in our economy benefiting businesses and individuals across Scotland.”

On the other side of the debate, independence campaigners argue that a yes vote would be good for business and good for jobs as an independent Scotland would be attractive to inward investors.

Leading Scottish business figure, Jim McColl, believes that independence is the only way Scotland can assume control of the economic levers and boost the economy further.

“If there is a No vote and the status quo, I think we are looking into a very sad future,” he told the Scotsman.

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