Scots exports to UK and world up 5% to £81bn

Scotland’s international and rest of UK exports in 2017 (excluding oil and gas) rose 5.2% to £81.4 billion from the previous year.

Exports to the rest of the UK rose 4.6% to £48.9 billion.

International exports increased by £1.9 billion to £32.4 billion in 2017, the highest annual growth rate (6.2%) since 2011.

Exports to EU countries rose 13.3% to £14.9 billion – meaning 46% of Scotland’s international exports in 2017 were to the EU.

The figures are estimated in a new report — National Statistics Publication: Export Statistics Scotland (ESS) 2017.

Economy Secretary Derek Mackay said: “It’s great news that Scotland’s economy and international exports both continue to grow, which follows last week’s unemployment figures being the lowest on record at 3.6%.

“Our manufacturing sector, including food and drink, is performing particularly well and it is encouraging to see increasing international interest in our service sector.

“This welcome growth will be supported even further through our Export Growth Plan including substantial investment to maximise the value of Scottish exports.

“GDP has increased in every quarter since the start of 2017 and in annual terms is growing broadly in line with the rest of the UK.

“However, the key risk to Scotland’s economy continues to be the uncertainty associated with Brexit, and in particular the risk of a no-deal Brexit.

“It is vital that the UK Government responds to the vote of the House of Commons on the 29 January and takes immediate and urgent steps to rule out a no-deal Brexit, which threatens to have devastating consequences for our economy, extend the Article 50 process and hold a second referendum on EU membership.”