Depressed pound helps Scottish exports power ahead

The value of exported goods by Scottish businesses jumped more than a quarter the first three months of 2017 compared with the same period of last year, according to new figures from HM Revenue & Customs.

Machinery and transport made the most significant contribution to Scotland's exports. Picture: John Devlin

Exports from Scottish companies lifted 27 per cent to £7.2 billion, up from £5.7bn. Exports to EU countries accounted for 46 per cent of the total, followed by Asia and Australia and New Zealand on 20 per cent and North America on 16 per cent.

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Machinery and transport exports made the most significant contribution – 30 per cent of the total – while mineral fuels accounted for 28 per cent.

Alan Aitchison, audit partner at accountancy group RSM, said: “The decrease in the value of the pound since last year’s referendum has helped exporters and these figures show that the region’s businesses have been making the most of this.”

However, he said Brexit talks made the exports outlook less clear.