Construction slows as Scots economy grows 0.2%

The Scottish economy grew 0.2% during the third quarter of 2017, according to gross domestic product (GDP) statistics announced by Scotland’s Chief Statistician.

During the third quarter of 2017 output in the services sector grew by 0.2%, output in production grew by 1.2% — but output in the construction sector fell by 2.9%.

On an annual basis, compared to the third quarter of 2016, the Scottish economy grew by 0.6%.

Economy Secretary Keith Brown said: “Despite the impact that continued Brexit uncertainty is having on our economy, today’s figures demonstrate the resilience of the Scottish Economy with the third consecutive quarter of positive growth.

“Although more modest than we would like, it is encouraging to see the economy grow by 0.2% overall.

“Within this, it’s particularly heartening to see services continue to expand, and production up by 1.2%, with a return to growth for manufacturing.

“While these figures show a fall in construction output, this is as a result of activity returning to more normal levels following our increased investment in large transport infrastructure developments over recent years, including the Forth Replacement Crossing, M8 missing link and the Borders Railway.

“Our determination to seize opportunity and grow our economy is demonstrated by the £270 million increase on economic spending we announced in the 2018/19 Draft Budget.

“However it cannot be stressed enough that the single biggest threat to our economy as a whole remains the lack of clarity from the UK Government over Brexit.

“This week the Scottish Government published analysis which showed that failure to remain in the Single Market or secure a free trade agreement would see Scotland’s GDP around £12.7 billion lower by 2030 than it would be under continued EU membership.

“I would once again call on the UK Government to give people and businesses greater certainty over the Brexit process in order to further stimulate growth in Scotland’s business communities and allow us to continue to attract and retain talent within our workforce.”