Retail figures demonstrate need for more support

Responding to the Scottish Retail Sales Monitor figures which shows that food and non-food sales have now shown a decline in three of the last six months with like-for-like sales 1.5% lower than a year ago, John Drummond, SGF Chief Executive, said:

“These figures are a clear manifestation and continual reminder of the squeeze household budgets all across Scotland are experiencing with consumer confidence in Scotland continuing to lag behind that of the rest of the UK.

“Retailers, like households, are not immune from the dual pressures of contracting incomes and rising overhead costs.

“Whilst we accept that the economic outlook will continue to remain bleak for some time, we also believe that Government – both UK and Scottish – could be doing more to help.

“Action on rising energy costs, freezing the national minimum wage for 2012, holding back planned rises in the business rates bill for next April and reducing the regulatory and legislative burden on retailers would all go a long way in helping retailers weather this storm.”