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SCC COMMENT ON BCC SURVEY
Commenting on the publication of the latest British Chambers of Commerce survey, Liz Cameron, Chief Executive of Scottish Chambers of Commerce, said:
"This latest survey from the British Chambers of Commerce reveals further evidence that the rate of decline in the Scottish manufacturing sector may be easing, but there are still challenges facing our service sector. We will be looking to drill down deeper into the detail of this when the results of the Scottish Chambers of Commerce Quarterly Business Survey are published next week, but in the meantime the message is clear that although there may be signs of light at the end of the tunnel, neither business nor Government can afford to take their eye off the ball as we prepare for the future.
"The good news is that businesses up and down the country may be beginning to regain their optimism. Confidence is a precious but fragile commodity in or economy right now, and we must look to grow our stock of this valuable asset. Challenging times remain, and it will be some time before we can declare that we have reached even the beginning of the end of this recession, but many Scottish businesses are growing in strength and we must work to turn this into a real competitive advantage for our economy. One of the major difficulties we face will be in retaining key skills within our economy, and as we enter into the long run-in to the next UK General Election, we are challenging all political parties to deliver real support to businesses in order to retain staff, by supporting short-time working initiatives and refraining from further taxes on employment such as the planned increases in National Insurance Contributions."