SFE responds to 2021 budget

In response to today’s budget, Sandy Begbie CBE, Chief Executive of Scottish Financial Enterprise, said:

“Today’s budget and three-year spending review is arguably one of the most important in recent times. Measures on economic recovery were, rightly, the focus of the Chancellor's statement and this priority aligns closely with SFE’s priorities as highlighted in our strategy.

“While we are positive that a green, inclusive recovery is within our grasp, we are seeing warning signs within the economy that growth is at risk without the right interventions. With this in mind, we are encouraged by the Chancellors willingness to use the full spectrum of fiscal powers to stimulate the economy.

“In the short-term, measures such as the £7bn business rates relief will offer much needed support for small and medium sized businesses, the lifeblood of our economy, through what will be a challenging period ahead.  

“Looking towards the longer term, the announcement of a 48% rise in skills investment as well as investment pledges on housing and infrastructure are welcome. Public investment in these areas is vital if we are going to see the sustained growth and increased productivity that is central to the government’s levelling up agenda and, as the Chancellor alluded to, will help to unlock greater private investment.

“SFE continues to work closely with both the UK and Scottish Governments and will make the case wherever we can to ensure the policy environment supports a green economic recovery whilst creating opportunities for our young people. We must work in collaboration if we are to accelerate sustainable economic growth and SFE will play its part in identifying and supporting policies that achieve this very aim.”