The report by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR), commissioned by Maritime UK and the Scottish Maritime Cluster, also estimates that indirectly the sector helps support a total of £19.5bn in turnover and about 155,000 jobs.
It shows that the marine engineering and scientific industry is the largest area within the Scottish maritime sector in terms of economic activity, contributing £2.5bn in gross value added (GVA) and directly supporting some 29,000 jobs, in 2017.
Chief executive of the UK Chamber of Shipping, Bob Sanguinetti, said: “This report highlights the importance of the Scottish maritime sector to the Scottish economy and shows just how well it is doing.
“The Scottish maritime sector has shown great leadership in the development of new technologies, with hybrid and battery-operated ferries already in service, and the Scottish oil and gas and renewables industries are leading the way in helping meet the UK’s energy needs and providing cleaner, greener energy.”
CEBR’s research indicates that Scottish maritime sector turnover and GVA are set to grow at a compounded annual growth rate of 2.6 per cent over the period 2017 to 2023. This translates into a cumulative nominal growth rate of 14 per cent.
Andrew Hemphill, Peel Ports, Clydeport and chairman of the BPA Scottish Ports Group, said: “These figures demonstrate the continued success of the Scottish maritime sector.
“The unique mix of ownership models and a stable development framework has enabled this success, but this must not be taken for granted.
“An uncertain economic outlook and huge decarbonisation challenges mean that the Scottish maritime sector must continue to innovate and invest in new technologies and processes.”
He added: “2020 will be the Year of Coasts and Waters and we look forward to continued success next year and continued working with the Scottish Government so we can make further progress on shared challenges.”
Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters will see annual events such as the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival at Portsoy and Crail Food Festival joined by the Fife Regatta and an expanded Clydebuilt Festival, while the Edinburgh International Film Festival will present Scotland’s Shores, featuring classic film screenings and a “special outdoor coastal experience”.
Meanwhile, Scottish Canals has announced the results of an economic study showing £1.53bn of investment in the canal corridors across Scotland since the re-opening of the lowland inland waterways in 2002. The study was conducted by Peter Brett Associates – now part of Stantec.