Global Forces Influence Scottish Engineering Companies

Global forces which are impacting on the price of crude oil are creating problems for the majority of engineering companies operating in Scotland.

According to figures produced by Scottish Engineering in their latest Quarterly Review of the industry order levels have dropped significantly in the last three months – both in the home market and in exports.

Another feature over which the industry has no control is the strength of the pound which is causing problems for companies which rely on exports.

Speaking of the North Sea situation, Bryan Buchan, CEO of Scottish Engineering said: “Many of our member companies who are not directly involved in extraction on the UKCS but who over the years have developed expertise in the manufacture of components and equipment are now seeing their activities radically curtailed.”

Looking more specifically at orders, UK orders in general (20%up,38%same,42%down) show a negative balance of 22 points while exports (22%up,32%same,46%down) have a 24 point negative balance. These figures are also reflected in output volume where (26%up,31%same,43%down) a 17 point negative figure will fall further before it improves, based on the orders downturn.

One area which is not giving cause for concern is staffing (26%up,47%same,27%down) which appears to be holding up. Forecasts for the next quarter are actually positive (22%up,60%same,18%down) and show that more companies are considering increasing their staff than are expecting to see their levels falling.

Despite the adverse tone of the latest Review, Mr Buchan is confident that there are a number of engineering manufacturing companies throughout Scotland which are not directly affected by the oil situation that are actually performing extremely well in such adverse conditions.

For further information contact Colin McGill on 0141 221 3181 or 07976 224412 or visit the Scottish Engineering website on