Scottish engineers call for immediate action on energy to avert disaster

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Scotland’s engineering sector is on a potentially “disastrous course” as companies grapple with the energy crisis.

Releasing its latest quarterly review, industry organisation Scottish Engineering said the current squeeze was overshadowing what would have been a “notable high” of a record six quarters of order and output growth.

Industry leaders said the report highlighted the disparity where companies were on the one hand sitting on bumper order books, yet at the same time taking advice on consideration of voluntary liquidation, such is the scale of the energy pricing crisis.

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Scottish Engineering’s chief executive, Paul Sheerin, said: “For an industry that prides itself on facing challenges without drama, these responses - especially relating to business sustainability - are a wakeup call to the damage that could be inflicted unless the whole energy crisis is addressed, not just the consumer energy pricing impact.

Scottish Engineering chief executive Paul Sheerin. Picture: Guy HinksScottish Engineering chief executive Paul Sheerin. Picture: Guy Hinks
Scottish Engineering chief executive Paul Sheerin. Picture: Guy Hinks

“Our manufacturing sector provides high quality employment, yet the current industrial energy outlook places that employment at risk, and that is the last thing our society currently needs.

“A time of crisis calls for action, and so an end to the empty leadership space in the UK government is better late than never, and it is essential that the space is filled by a commitment to avert the disastrous course we are currently on.”

The membership body stressed that more than half of all respondents have yet to experience the full impact, as their current energy contracts do not expire until 2023 or 2024. Those who have been impacted report an average increase of more than three and a half times their previous charges.

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