Nicola Sturgeon to visit USA and promote Scotland as ‘open for business’

Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is to visit California and New York next month on a mission to promote the country to the North American business community following UK’s decision to leave the EU.

Pipe bands march through New York celebrating Scottish links with USA

The Scottish Government is looking to strengthen links with the USA where more than 5 million Americans can claim to have Scots ancestors, including 34 of the 44 men to occupy the White House as President.

The First Minister’s visit, which takes place during Scotland Week in the USA, will focus on advancing trade and investment between the two countries, boosting tourism, sharing best practice across the public and private sector, and pushing Scottish innovation and entrepreneurship.

The First Minister will also speak at Stanford University on Scotland’s place in the world and at the UN on the Scottish Government’s programme of work supporting women from areas of conflict in participating in peace building activities.

The USA remains Scotland’s top source of inward investment, accounting for 36 percent of inward investment projects and is Scotland’s second largest export partner – worth £4.56 billion a year, making up 15.9 percent of all international exports.

“Scotland has a longstanding relationship with the United States which spans family, friendship and business and this government is committed to continuing to strengthen these ties,” said the First Minister.

“We have a strong record in attracting international investment and Scotland continues to be the top destination in the UK for foreign direct investment outside of London. We have also seen a steady rise in visitors from North America to Scotland in recent years and a growing interest from the US market in Scottish products.”

Photograph by: Gerry McCannFirst Minister Nicola Sturgeon

The programme of activity, delivered by Scottish Development International (SDI) and the Scottish Government, will take place from  2 to 7 April 2017 in both California and New York City.

Ms Sturgeon’s visit will include a number of business engagements covering technology, food and drink and tourism.

“There are huge opportunities for Scottish business in the USA particularly in technology and tourism, two areas which will be at the centre of this visit,” added Ms Sturgeon.

“Following the UK’s vote to leave the EU and the UK Government’s decision to leave the single market, I want to reassure investors and visitors from the United States that Scotland is an outward looking, welcoming country and remains open for business.”