Monthly GDP estimates for March

An experimental statistics publication for Scotland.

Scotland’s onshore GDP grew by 2.1% in March, according to statistics announced today by the Chief Statistician. Output remains 5.4% below the pre-pandemic level in February 2020, and has fallen by 0.9% during the recent restrictions since October 2020.

In March there was growth in each of the production, construction and services sectors, but output remained relatively subdued in many subsectors while restrictions continued. Overall output in the services sector grew by 1.6%, with the largest contribution coming from the education subsector for the second month in a row due to the phased return to in-school learning during February and March.

Output in the production sector increased by 3% in March, including 1.9% growth in the manufacturing subsector. Output in the construction sector is estimated to have increased by 5.7%.

Using the experimental monthly statistics for Quarter 1 as a whole (January to March), GDP is provisionally estimated to have fallen by 2.1% compared to Quarter 4, reflecting the impact of the second lockdown in place since the start of the year. These results will be updated in the Quarterly GDP First Estimate for Quarter 1, which is a national statistics release, on 16 June.


The Monthly GDP Estimate for March 2021 is available at:

Gross Domestic Product (GDP) measures the output of the economy in Scotland. These monthly estimates have been developed to help track the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. These are designated as experimental official statistics. This means that they are still in development but have been released to enable their use at an early stage. All results are provisional and subject to relatively high levels of uncertainty.

All results are seasonally adjusted and presented in real terms (adjusted to remove inflation). GDP growth in this publication relates to Scotland’s onshore economy, which means it does not include the output of offshore oil and gas extraction.

Further information on GDP statistics is available at

These estimates are compiled in line with the Code of Practice for Statistics – more information on the standards of official statistics can be accessed at:


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