AN MP has made a clarity call on behalf of workers at a major Scottish shopping centre after its owners revealed further finance woes.

Intu Properties is one of biggest shopping centre operators in the UK with assets including the Braehead retail and leisure complex near Glasgow.

As well as housing major high street chains, the site hosts live events including Disney On Ice shows.

Before lockdown started, Intu reported a £2billion loss for 2019 amidst a consumer spending downturn.

On Friday it said lenders had extended the repayment period for its £4.5 billion debts until the end of June.

Today the firm, which also owns Manchester's Trafford Centre and the Lakeside development in Essex, said it had been paid less than 30% of rents owed this month.

That compares with almost 80% during the same period in 2019, with all but essential outlets currently closed.

In a statement, it said it may now default on its debts and is asking lenders for a grace period running until the end of next year.

The company said it is unable to sell any assets at this time to raise funds to cover the monies owed.

However, it said this remains a possibility after the crisis eases in order to "fix the balance sheet".

It will also consider alternative solutions, Intu said.

Gavin Newlands MP, whose Paisley and Renfrewshire North constituency covers Braehead, told The National: "This news is added worry for the hundreds of employees at Braehead at the worst possible time.

The National:

"It’s been clear for some months now that Intu has major issues, but this shouldn’t distract from the fact that Braehead itself is in good financial health and when I met with centre management just before Christmas they were reassuring on the centre’s future.

“We know that the current situation is having a massive impact on our overall economy, and particularly in retail, but that doesn’t alter the fact that prior to lockdown Braehead was performing well and can continue to do so into the future.

“Workers there need clarity on what Intu’s plans are for Braehead and for the wider company.

"Smaller retailers in the centre have already benefited from the Scottish Government’s business support package and once we begin moving out of the lockdown at some point in the future Braehead will remain an attractive destination for visitors locally and nationally.”