Clarity, consistency and continuity needed for smooth move out of lockdown

Wednesday, 20 May 2020

As the First Minister prepares to announce her plans to begin easing lockdown restrictions, the latest Covid-19 Tracker survey by the Scottish Chamber of Commerce clarified what business needs to navigate the changes smoothly.

The survey captures views from hundreds of businesses from across Fife and the rest of the country and the findings are stark:  the absolute requirement for clarity, contingency and continuity to allow a safe and successful restart of the economy:

  • Clarity: clear and practical guidance for businesses so they can properly plan for an orderly and safe return to work;
  • Contingency: there is a need for contingency planning in the event that lockdown has to be introduced;
  • Continuity: financial support packages for business must be maintained for as long as necessary and should reflect that not all sectors will be able to resume operations at the same time or at the same pace.

The survey results mirror the messages that SCC and its member chambers have been relaying at a series of meetings over the last month with senior Scottish and UK Government Ministers, and with the leaders of the other Scottish political parties.       

Further meetings with senior Scottish and UK policy makers are planned in the coming weeks in response to the sectoral ‘return to work’ guidance that is expected soon.  This will include the opportunity for Fife Chamber members to question Ian Murray, Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland, and Jamie Hepburn, Minister for Business, Fair Work and Skills.