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01 December 2017

FSB: Bank closures will make it more difficult to run a business in Scotland

Reference number: SPUR0112

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) may close an additional 62 Scottish branches, it has been revealed. Earlier this week, news emerged that Bank of Scotland has plans to close 13 branches.

Andy Willox, FSB’s Scottish policy convenor, said: “This is bitterly disappointing news – particularly for those bank workers whose jobs are under threat – but also for the Scottish towns, cities and villages affected. Ultimately, these changes will make it more difficult to run a business in much of Scotland – including many deprived communities and tourism hotspots.

“While many small businesses use online banking, that doesn’t mean they don’t handle cash, and therefore need to visit a branch. Further, many of the branches under threat are in parts of the country with particularly poor mobile and broadband coverage – a fact to which RBS seems to be paying scant regard.

“It is time for the big banks to come clean regarding their long-term plans. If they’re going to wind down their branch network, they need to develop proper alternatives to service all of their customers’ needs. So far promises made regarding smart ATMs and mobile banking have not been delivered.”

 

ENDS