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Circularity Scotland plunges into administration

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Circularity Scotland, the body expected to manage a controversial bottle and can recycling scheme in Scotland has ceased trading and has appointed administrators.

Circular Economy Minister Lorna Slater confirmed the news to MSPs and said it leaves the 40 staff in a “difficult position”.

Blair Nimmo and Alistair McAlinden from Interpath Advisory were appointed joint administrators

A statement from Interpath said: “Following the most recent announcement, it was clear that CSL would be unable to meet various significant contractual obligations, certain of which would become due imminently, without additional funding.

“While CSL was in active discussions with key stakeholders to secure additional funding, these negotiations unfortunately proved unsuccessful and so, after exhausting all other potential options, the company’s directors took the difficult decision to file for the appointment of administrators.”

CSL ceased to trade immediately upon the appointment of the joint administrators.

The joint administrators’ focus will now be on securing and realising CSL’s available assets, for the benefit of its creditors.

Blair Nimmo, chief executive of Interpath Advisory and joint administrator, said: “The ongoing uncertainty surrounding the future launch of the Deposit Return Scheme prompted the Company’s backers to withdraw future funding, and as such, the directors were left with few options other than to seek the appointment of administrators.”

Alistair McAlinden, managing director at Interpath Advisory, added: “We are in the process of arranging a meeting with the employees to take place tomorrow morning to explain what the administration means for them.”

There had been speculation last week that the not-for-profit organisation was on the brink of collapse after the Scottish Government delayed the deposit return scheme.

Ms Slater made the decision to push the start back to October 2025 after UK government ministers added conditions to its operation.

Today Ms Slater survived a confidence vote in the parliament moved by the Scottish Conservatives after telling the Parliament: “We have learned today that a process is under way is to appoint administrators to CSL [Circularity Scotland Ltd] leaving their staff in extremely difficult position.

“This is an unforgivable consequence of the UK government’s 11th hour intervention which undermined our deposit return scheme, made progress impossible and is now resulting in these jobs being lost.”

Scottish Greens environment spokesperson Mark Ruskell said: “This is a significant and deeply frustrating development that will leave dozens of people looking for new jobs, undermine future investment, and erode trust in what any UK scheme might be able to achieve given it is the Tories that caused it to collapse. 

“People will rightly question the role played by the Scottish Secretary Alister Jack in all of this, as well as the lack of climate leadership from his Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.  Most significant though, is the sharp focus it has brought on the Tories’ commitment to using Westminster’s powers to undermine the Scottish Parliament and the devolution settlement.”

“The Scottish Greens will continue to push for real action over our environment and take on the Tories at every turn to do what is best for the people of Scotland, no matter how they try to frustrate progress on tackling the climate emergency.”

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