Responding to the publication of the first estimate of GDP for Quarter 1 2021, Economy Secretary Kate Forbes (pictures) said:
“We can see clearly in these statistics that Scotland’s economy is still suffering from the effects of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
“This is to be expected in these estimates particularly, given they are for Quarter 1 when we were in the midst of restrictions to suppress the virus.
“Compared to the same quarter last year our economy is 5.4% smaller, slightly less than the equivalent figure for the UK of 6.1%
“However, despite Scotland’s GDP contracting by 1.9% in the first quarter of 2021, monthly data indicates that the contraction during the quarter was confined to January and driven by the tightened restrictions required.
“As lockdown restrictions eased in April and into May, economic activity has further strengthened as businesses have resumed trading, building on growth seen in February and March and demonstrating the resilience of the Scottish economy.
“As we recover from the COVID pandemic we are committed to building on the £3.6 billion in support we have delivered to businesses since March 2020 and ensure we seize Scotland’s economic potential, creating secure, sustainable and satisfying jobs.”