The ONS has released the latest monthly and quarterly GDP data.
Paul Butterworth, CEO at Chambers Wales South East, South West and Mid, said:
“The latest ONS data showing a minimal GDP increase of 0.2% in September and no growth at all in Q3 highlights the ongoing difficulties that the UK and Welsh economies face.
“Businesses in Wales have dealt with three years of economic shocks with little relief and, despite steps in the right direction, are still impacted by high inflation and interest rates. Our Quarterly Economic Survey for Q3 results revealed that 62% of Welsh businesses feel that inflation is more of a concern to them now than it was in the previous quarter, with 54% citing interest rates as a key concern.
“These factors, combined with ongoing recruitment and skills challenges, mean businesses are hesitant to invest in plans to support their long-term growth. Firms will now be looking to the Autumn Statement for clear, bold decisions which help create a framework for growth.”
Alex Veitch Director of Policy and Insights at the British Chambers of Commerce, said:
“Today’s preliminary estimate, showing GDP failed to grow in Q3, provides further evidence of the difficulties the UK economy faces. Weak growth in construction offset a fall in services output, while production remained flat. However, the outlook across all sectors remains uncertain.
“Our research is clear about the issues businesses are up against. After three years of economic shocks, firms are now having to deal with high inflation and interest rates. They also face persistent skills shortages and trade barriers with the European Union. Consequently, most SMEs report no increase in their investment plans.
“Businesses need to see a clear path ahead for growth from Government. The Autumn Statement must set out a strategic vision and framework to boost investment. We are calling on the Chancellor to be bold and focus on key issues that impact business, including planning, full expensing, the energy grid, business rates and occupational health.”