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  • Writer's pictureKenneth Gibson MSP

Scotland's Top Five International Exports

What does Scotland actually sell abroad? Here is the list of the top five Scottish export categories:

1. Food and drink £4,800 million The largest export category was "food and drink," worth £4,800 million in 2015 or 16.8% of Scotland's £29,000 million in international exports.

Over 80% of that figure represents whisky exports which accounted for £3,800 million in 2015, and has since surpassed £4,000 million.

Exports of food and drink continue to represent around a third of all international exports from the manufacturing sector.

2. Professional, scientific and technical £3,500 million The second largest sector is worth 12.2% of all international exports.

These services include legal, accounting, management, architecture, engineering, technical testing and analysis.

The sector saw the largest increases in the nominal value of international exports to non-EU countries, in particular communication services, up £165 million, 25.4%, to £820 million in 2015.

The manufacture of basic metals and fabricated metal products rose steeply by £130 million, or 57.6% to £340 million in 2015.

3. Petroleum and chemicals £2,800 million The manufacture of refined petroleum and chemical products accounts for 9.6% of all international exports.

Recent increases added about £600 million, 28%, between 2014 and 2015.

This was the largest annual increase in the value of manufacturing exports.

4. Mining and Quarrying £2,100 million Mining and quarrying account for 7.4% of all international exports. The sector has grown by 7% in the last year.

5. Wholesale £1,600 million

The wholesale and retail trade accounted for 5.7% of all international exports. These figures cover a bewildering array of categories, including wholesale agricultural products, fish and crustaceans, molluscs, as well as repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles.

Commenting, Kenneth Gibson MSP said:

"Exports are vital to the health and prosperity of both the Scottish and North Ayrshire economies.

"The size, scale and breadth of Scotland's exports shows the robust diversity of the Scottish economy.

"It is also heartening to see growth in so many sectors.

"Here in North Ayrshire many diverse companies export, from DSM and GSK to Highland Meats and Isle of Arran Distillery. The SNP Government will continue to work hard to build our export markets further, creating and sustaining employment and prosperity.



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