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Rising energy prices a bane for UK businesses: ONS study




Flames rise from a domestic gas ring of a furnace in Durham, Britain on September 23, 2021. [Photo/Agencies]

LONDON — One in six businesses in the United Kingdom (UK) expect their overall performance to decline in 2023 due to soaring energy prices, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said on Monday. ) in one study.

Catering companies are the most affected, with 45% expecting a drop in performance, followed by those active in the accommodation sector, at 30%.

The ONS said more than a fifth of businesses nationwide said energy prices were their biggest concern for November 2022.

Catering businesses are more likely than any other industry to cut their weekly trade by at least two in November 2022 to cut their energy bills, the ONS said.

They are also by far the most likely to reduce trading hours, even if they still operate for the same number of days, he said.

Around 28% of UK businesses said they expected a price increase in November. The respective figure among food and beverage service companies nationwide was 41%.

About 76% of foodservice businesses and 59% of accommodation establishments said energy costs are leading them to consider price increases, compared to 34% across all sectors.

The study also reveals the likely impact of energy prices on business performance. When asked about the revenue forecast for November, 21% of all businesses and 70% of hosting companies expected revenue to decline.

The wider hospitality industry, which employs around one in 14 workers in the UK, has been hit particularly hard by rising energy prices, the ONS said.

Manufacturers are also under pressure, with more than half of them saying that their production and/or their supply have been affected by the rise in energy prices.

About 37% of manufacturing companies said they expected their prices to rise in November. More than a third of companies whose production was affected by the rise in energy prices expected their turnover to fall during the month.