Responding to the announcement by the First Minister that the current lockdown restrictions will be extended to at least mid-February, Dr Liz Cameron, Chief Executive of the Scottish Chambers of Commerce, said:
“The extended lockdown restrictions will come as a heavy blow to much of Scotland’s business community who are already struggling to keep their heads above water and who now face further uncertainty over when they will be able to open their doors again.
“We cannot emphasise enough the importance of increasing the pace of distributing business support grants; this must be accelerated in order to prevent the significant collapse of businesses and jobs. We also call on the Scottish Government to use the Scottish Budget next week to outline measures to help restore much needed confidence and investment.
“We also urge the UK Government to seriously consider the clear need to extend the furlough scheme beyond April 2021 and outline further initiatives to protect business and jobs at the UK Budget in March.’’