Scottish small businesses '˜at risk' following Trump election

A LEADING Scottish lawyer has warned that Donald Trump's lack of political experience could adversely affect UK and Scottish small businesses.

President-elect Trump's lack of political experience could have a negative effect on Scottish SMEs says Peter Duff. Picture: John Devlin.

Peter Duff, partner at law firm Morisons LLP and vice-president of the UK200Group – the UK’s largest membership association of chartered accountancy and law firms – said that small businesses faced “further uncertainty” as a result of the US election in a time when they were already struggling in the wake of the UK’s Brexit vote.

He said: “Post-Brexit UK businesses, in particular the SME market, are facing a period of uncertainty with which it is difficult to cope.

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“The election of a president who has no political experience and has never operated at the top level of international politics, who is viewed with scepticism by the markets, will create further uncertainty until we see what experience he can garner around him.”

Mr Duff’s colleague at UK200Group, Liz Ward, principal at Leeds-based Virtuoso Legal, said: “I have real concerns that the US will harden its position on international trade and it will become more difficult for overseas businesses to take their goods and services to the US market.

“The US already makes it difficult for the importation of some goods. A more protectionist president won’t seek to reduce barriers, he will seek to increase them. This will set back technological advances by years and harm much of the intangible capital the UK has to offer.”