Press release

Scottish Secretary: Banging the drum for Scottish exports

UK Government convenes a new board of trade to ensure the benefits of free trade are spread throughout the UK

  • Scottish Secretary joins President of the Board of Trade Dr Liam Fox at the first new Board of Trade today in Bristol.
  • First meeting attended by representatives from Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
  • Advisers from across the United Kingdom present – including two from Scotland – to provide expertise on trade and investment.

Secretary of State for Scotland, David Mundell, will today [12 October] take his place at the table of the new Board of Trade, convened to help boost exports, attract inward investors and ensure the benefits of free trade are spread equally across the country.

The new UK Government Board of Trade will bring together prominent figures from business and politics from each part of the UK to provide expertise and guide the Board on trade and investment matters.

David Mundell will be joined two expert business advisers from Scotland: Brian Wilson and Ian Curle.

Secretary of Scotland David Mundell said:

As the UK leaves the EU and we create an ambitious new trading relationship with the world, it is imperative that the voices of Scottish businesses are at the very heart of our planning.

I will be joining Cabinet colleagues in Bristol today as part of the UK Government’s new Board of Trade to bang the drum for Scottish businesses. The UK Government is committed to driving prosperity, supporting Scottish businesses and ensuring everyone feels the economic benefits as we build a truly global Britain.

I am very pleased that Brian Wilson and Ian Curle are joining us in this effort. Together, we will be a strong voice for Scotland, as we aim to help more Scottish businesses export overseas.

President of the Board of Trade Dr Liam Fox said:

There is a world of opportunity out there for UK businesses and the Board of Trade will help identify and unlock new export markets and encourage further inward investment.

The advisers on the Board will act as the ‘eyes and ears’ of the modern businesses community to ensure the benefits of free trade are spread equally across the country.

Brian Wilson was a Labour MP from 1987 until 2005 and is a former UK Trade Minister and Energy Minister. He is currently the chairman of Harris Tweed Hebrides and a director of Celtic plc. In 2012, he was named UK Global Director of the Year by the institute of Directors and in 2014 was the author of a report on Scottish exporting. Brian is also a Visiting Professor at the University of Strathclyde.

Ian Curle has served as CEO of the Edrington Group since 2004, having joined the company in 1986. Edrington is one of Scotland’s leading premium spirits companies and produces internationally recognised brands such as The Famous Grouse. The company has annual sales of over £500m. Ian is also chairman of the North British Distillery and former chairman of The Scotch Whisky Association.

Published 12 October 2017