Scottish Economic Growth Reported for 11th Straight Quarter

August 21, 2015

The Scottish economy grew for the 11th consecutive quarter during the first three months of 2015, according to a report published by the government’s chief economist.

All major sectors of the Scottish economy apparently experienced expansion in the period, with positive trends recorded throughout the labour market.

The ‘State of the Economy’ report reflects progress being made around the country, with uninterrupted growth having now been recorded for the longest period since 2001 and well before the Financial Crisis.

“Although Scotland has not been immune to the global economic challenges over the last few years and there is undoubtedly still work to be done, these figures show our economy’s underlying resilience – with positive trends apparent in both employment and investment levels,” commented John Swinney, Scotland’s deputy first minister.

“The Scottish government remains committed to building a fairer, more sustainable, and more resilient economy, translating into real opportunities for business and added security for workers and families,” he said.

Among the headline figures noted in the recent report were a growth rate of 0.6 per cent for the economy as a whole in the first quarter of the year, with employment described as being “at or around record levels”.

Scotland’s chief economist suggests that there is currently a positive outlook for the economy throughout the year with independent economists expecting annual economic growth of around 2.4 per cent in 2015.

However, low oil prices and the slowing of the Chinese economy are cited as potential clouds on the horizon as far as growth in the Scottish economy is concerned.

Plus, economists north of the border are apparently concerned at the potential for a tightening of public spending in the UK as a whole to hinder the Scottish economy to some degree.

One particularly positive point to be taken from the recent report though is that employment across Scotland is heading in the right direction, with unemployment now at close to pre-recession average rates.

Of the individual sectors within the Scottish economy, that of construction was picked out as having seen the sharpest growth during the first quarter of this year, with its “very strong growth” having been “underpinned by public investment”.

John Baird

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