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Scotland Week 2012
Two Scottish Ministers will travel to the USA and Canada next month to promote Scotland as a modern, creative and dynamic nation for business, tourism and culture.
Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop and Enterprise, Energy and Tourism Minister Fergus Ewing will undertake a programme of business meetings and promotional engagements in the USA and Canada – working with VisitScotland and Scottish Development International (SDI) - during Scotland Week 2012.
The Year of Creative Scotland will be a key theme of Scotland Week 2012, highlighting Scotland’s international reputation as a land of culture, creativity and heritage to strengthen economic links with two of Scotland’s biggest markets.
Highlights of this year’s programme include:
Ms Hyslop said:
“Scotland and Canada and the USA share many deep and lasting connections. Scotland Week 2012 is a fantastic opportunity to build on existing relationships and forge new alliances that promote Scotland as one of the world’s most creative nations and an internationally competitive and innovative business location.
“Canada and the USA are tremendously important to Scotland’s economy, with the USA our largest export market, largest inward investor and largest overseas tourist market. Scotland Week is now an annual opportunity to promote Scotland and our many creative talents – from fashion and textiles, to science and engineering – will take centre stage in 2012, the Year of Creative Scotland.”
Mr Ewing said:
“Scotland is home to a wealth of ambitious, innovative companies and Scotland Week 2012 is a great opportunity for us to strengthen and grow Scotland’s economic and cultural bonds with Canada and the USA.
“The Scottish Government, Scottish Development International and VisitScotland are working hard to develop our key export markets and to increase Scotland’s share of global investment and trade. Over the last 5 years we have attracted over 13,000 jobs and at least £1 billion investment from the USA.
"During Scotland Week 2012 we will showcase Scotland's world-leading products and services, particularly in industries with significant growth potential, and help pave the way for more businesses to identify opportunities, and ultimately bring investment and jobs to Scotland.
“With the USA being our number one export destination, I look forward to playing my part in building on our historic shared ties and to champion Scotland as a dynamic marketplace with growing investment potential.”
Anne MacColl, Chief Executive of Scottish Development International, said:
“While new and emerging economies offer increasing opportunities for Scotland, we must continue to build relationships with trade and investment partners in established markets. In 2010 alone, Scotland exported an estimated £3.5 billion of goods to the USA and in 2011 saw investment from major global players such as State Street, Ceridian and Bank of New York Mellon, making the North American markets hugely significant to the Scottish economy.
"In support of Scotland Week's aim of establishing more economic opportunities in this region, SDI has arranged a series of company meetings in New York, Houston, Calgary, San Francisco, Vancouver and Chicago to highlight Scotland's thriving oil and gas sector and further boost Scotland's reputation as the ideal partner of choice in ambitious world-leading projects.
"The US economic recovery is strengthening and economic growth there is now among the highest of western economies. With US employment increasing and both consumer and business confidence rising, we should see an increase in demand for Scottish goods and services. To take advantage of this we need to ensure our message to Canada and the US is clear: Scotland is very much open for business and ready to compete on a global stage."
Malcolm Roughead, VisitScotland chief executive, said: “Scotland Week provides us with an excellent opportunity to target key Canadian and US markets and to ultimately talk up the many facets of Scottish tourism.
“Over the next three years the eyes of the world will be on Scotland. Major events and milestones such as the Ryder Cup, Disney Pixar’s Brave and Homecoming Scotland 2014 will provide Scotland with a captive global audience, maximizing the economic benefit of tourism to Scotland.”