Press release

Foreign investors see opportunities in Scotland

New figures published today by the Department for International Trade show Scotland attracted 183 inward investment projects in 2016-17.


This led to over 5,500 new jobs being created providing security and stability to thousands of families.

In another record year, the UK attracted 2,265 foreign direct investment projects which led to the creation of nearly 75,226 new jobs across the country.

UK Government Minister Dr Ian Duncan said:

Today’s figures show that Scotland and the whole of the UK is continuing to be an attractive destination for foreign investors who are recognising that our skills and world class industries are second to none.

We want this trend to continue and see even more investment, and I would encourage businesses to work with the UK Government’s Department for International Trade who support businesses to reach markets around the world through their global network of embassy-based trade experts.

International Trade Secretary, Liam Fox, said:

These results are great news for Scotland. As world leaders across a range of sectors including life sciences, oil and gas and financial services, it’s great to see foreign investors recognising the country’s excellence.

As an international economic department, the Department for International Trade will continue to promote the UK as a whole to potential investors and support Scottish Development International to attract inward investment.

The figures published today show that the US retains the top spot accounting for 577 projects of all inward investment projects to the UK. China (including Hong Kong) remains in second place with 160 projects and last year’s third place India is joined by Australia and New Zealand in joint third place with 127 projects each.

Demonstrating the diversity of the UK’s economy, sectors that performed particularly well include technology, renewable energy, life sciences and the creative industries which all saw an increase in the number of projects.

As part of the government’s drive to attract inward investment, in January this year the department launched a major global marketing campaign – Invest in GREAT Britain and Northern Ireland – to promote the UK’s offering to international investors.

To date, the campaign has generated 1.4 million page views of the invest section of the digital service and recorded over 540 prospective investor enquiries.

Published 6 July 2017