World Economy

Scotland Exports Lower Than in 2002

Scotland Exports Lower Than in 2002Scotland Exports Lower Than in 2002

International exports from Scotland are lower than they were in 2002, a new paper has claimed.

Economist Margaret Cuthbert said while international exports increased between 2012 and 2013, overseas trade from Scotland “actually fell by 2.5% in real terms” from £20.14 billion ($31 billion) in 2002 to £19.64 billion in 2013, NewsNow reported.

There’s a growing body of evidence that reinforces our approach is working...which echoes our trade and export analysis, and recognizes Scotland as a top European location for foreign direct investment.

She stated: “Despite the good performance in 2013, Scotland still lags in exports behind where it was in 2002.”

Her paper, published by the Jimmy Reid Foundation, questioned the degree of collaboration between the UK and Scottish government bodies charged with boosting international exports.

It also called for more reliable and up-to-date figures to be published detailing the level of Scottish exports to the rest of the UK and overseas.

As part of this, Cuthbert said the Scottish government’s global connections survey–which gathers data from companies which sell their products and services to other nations–should either be revamped or scrapped.

The paper claims there has been a “fundamental failure of the UK and Scottish government in the collection, collation and analysis of trade statistics for Scotland”.

She says the global connections survey data “is not timely enough” and adds that it contains no information on the barriers to exporting faced by firms “although the question was asked in the survey form”.

She adds: “The Global Connections Survey in its current form either needs a complete revamp or should be scrapped. What is required is a more thorough survey of trade between Scotland and the rest of the UK. Currently, there is no compulsion on businesses to answer the global connections survey.”

Both UK Trade and Investment and Scottish Development International, which is part of Scottish enterprise, are tasked with encouraging exports from Scotland and investment from overseas.