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Is enough being done to promote Scotland abroad and drive international investment?

21 July 2022

The Scottish Affairs Committee has today launched a new inquiry examining how Scotland is promoted internationally by the UK Government, and how – if necessary – this can be improved.

How well is Scotland promoted internationally?

The Committee will be delving into the investment in Scotland, particularly around trade and exports, and will be looking at what the recent and upcoming free trade agreements mean for Scotland’s economy.
It will also investigate how Scotland’s cultural offer is promoted overseas, and the lasting impact of international events held in Scotland, such as COP26, in making Scotland an appealing place to invest.

The Committee is keen to uncover how Scotland’s products and interests are represented overseas through the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Offices’ embassies and missions around the world.
It will examine the role of the Scotland Office in these endeavours and how it coordinates the promotion of Scotland.

Chair's comments

Scottish Affairs Committee Chairman, Pete Wishart, said:

“At home in the UK, we know Scotland’s extraordinary offering: from enormous cultural events of international significance to the finest food and drink.

“From whisky and fish to professional services, Scotland routinely punches above its weight on exports. The international appeal is there: 40% of Scottish exports - excluding oil and gas - go to countries all around the world, with the remaining 60% going to elsewhere in the UK.

“Our Committee will be examining how well Scotland is promoted internationally, particularly to investors that may be considering Scotland as a place to do business. Is there more we can do, and can we attract even more investment to Scotland?”

Terms of reference

The Committee is inviting written submissions by Thursday 22 September. These should focus on, but not be limited to:

  • How successful UK bodies and the UK Government have been in promoting investment in Scotland and Scottish products internationally, and steps they could take to improve this;
  • How Scottish interests are represented and promoted in UK embassies and missions around the world;
  • How effective the Scotland Office, in coordination with the FCDO, have been in promoting Scotland internationally, and whether this could be strengthened (i.e. how well they coordinate their activities);
  • The role of the UK Government in promoting Scottish trade and exports, and steps the UK Government should take to maximise the benefits of recent and upcoming Free-Trade Agreements for Scotland;
  • How effectively Scotland’s cultural offer is promoted overseas by the UK Government and its associated bodies;
  • How effectively hosting major international events such as COP26 have been capitalised on to boost Scotland’s profile/promote Scotland overseas. 

Further information

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