Japanese firms reach £1.5bn turnover in Scotland

There were 85 businesses in Scotland with parent companies registered in Japan by November 2016, with a collective turnover of £1.5 billion and 6,250 employees at 210 sites, new Scottish Government statistics show.

That was an increase of 520 local employees on 2015 figures and an additional £187 million Scottish turnover.

The Scottish Government’s external affairs secretary Fiona Hyslop told Japanese investors in Tokyo on Monday that Scotland now had the highest number of foreign direct investment projects on record and it “remains a great place to invest.”

Japan is Scotland’s seventh-biggest source of direct investment.

Speaking at the British Embassy in Tokyo, Hyslop said: “With substantial natural resources, one of the most highly educated workforces in Europe, a long-standing reputation for innovation and world-renowned universities, Scotland is a highly attractive place to do business for Japanese companies.

“While in Tokyo and Nagasaki this week, I will meet current and potential investors to reassure them that while the EU referendum result has cast a cloud of uncertainty over trading relationships, Scotland remains a great place to invest.

“At almost £1.5 billion, direct investment in Scotland from Japan is at a record high with excellent prospects to grow even further.”

Earlier on Monday Hyslop met Kyowa Hakko Kirin, the research and development company that acquired Galashiels firm ProStrakan in 2011.

Kyowa Hakko Kirin recently announced an expansion, taking the number of employees in Scotland from 150 to 200 over the next five years.

While in Japan, Hyslop is expected to discuss future plans with other current investors including Mitsubishi Electric and Reprocell.

The business reception at the British Embassy took place as part of a programme of activity delivered by Scottish Development International (SDI) and the Scottish Government.