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"Formidable" challenges ahead for Scottish retailers

Scotland’s retailers will face “formidable challenges” throughout 2017, the Scottish Retail Consortium (SRC) has warned.

Director David Lonsdale argued rising inflation and council taxes are likely to hit consumer spending and said retailers will have to continue to “grapple with a hotchpotch of government imposed cost pressures.”

“This is set to continue into early 2017 when employers of scale start forking out for the apprenticeship levy. This reinforces the need for government at every level to work more effectively with the retail industry to help it keep down the cost of living for consumers and to help it thrive and prosper.”

He also called for a “more coherent approach towards policy-making” in 2017.

Many retailers are already bracing themselves for a tough new year as the end of currency hedges coincides with revalued business rates and the ongoing impact of increased costs, including the living wage.

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