Scottish companies project international sales of £1.7 billion

Scottish businesses are set to deliver 366 export projects with a combined international sales value of £1.7 billion over the next three to five years, supported by Scottish Development International (SDI).

In 2015/16 SDI worked with 2,600 companies to achieve their international ambitions - more than 50 per cent were at the start of their international journey. Through focused support, 140 new and active Scottish exporters have now emerged.

Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy, Paul Wheelhouse said:

“It is very encouraging to see so many Scottish businesses selling their products all over the world and, of course Scotland has a tremendous brand and reputation for excellence, for example in food and drink and in developing software for the games industry.  Our Trade and Investment Strategy highlights our ambition to improve the strength and capabilities of Scotland's businesses even further and to expand our export base.  We want to take the strengths of Scotland’s economy and business base to the rest of the world, and bring the rest of the world to Scotland.   While our economy is fundamentally strong, and Scotland is an innovative and entrepreneurial country, our continued EU status - and, through that, our place in the world's biggest single market - is absolutely vital when it comes to promoting trade and protecting jobs, investment and long-term-prosperity. This is why we are so committed to pursuing every possible avenue to maintain our place in the EU."

Managing Director of Scottish Development International, Paul Lewis said:

“The newly launched Trade and Investment Strategy for Scotland 2016-2021 clearly sets out the importance of international trade to the future economic prosperity of Scotland. While Scotland’s performance has been encouraging over the last few years, these are still too few exporters concentrated in too few sectors and focused on too few markets. Therefore, these results are very encouraging. We have supported Scottish companies to access over 400 new markets ranging from China and Germany to Begium and South Africa, of which 160 products and services were taken to an international market for the first time.

“We are working to develop this approach further through a number of initiatives, such as increasing the impact of our international networks like GlobalScots. We are also helping businesses tap into new markets more effectively and strengthening our High Growth Markets unit, with its focus on markets such as China, India and the Middle East.  We’re also building on the strengths of Scotland’s premium consumer products in the key sectors of food and drink, tourism, textiles and education to take advantage of the growing market opportunities. Whilst encouraging, we are determined, along with our partners, to support many more new exporters in the years to come.”

Notes to editors:

Scottish Development International (SDI), the international arm of Scotland’s enterprise agencies, supports companies to access new international markets, take additional products and services to an international market for the first time, as well as helping companies to become new and active exporters for the first time.

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