2. Introduction

2. Introduction

The purpose of this report is to present information outlining where and how Scotland’s trade travels. The report highlights the values and types of goods transported, along with Scotland’s main transport gateways and corridors, and their trends over time. The report also summarises the key modes and routes used to lift and move Scottish freight, while at the same time drawing links to various goods exports and imports to and from Scotland.

The report is illustrated throughout with maps, graphs, and tables to highlight the values, destinations and origins of these goods, and to make the report more accessible.

The document is structured into four main chapters which each examine these issues in greater depth:

Chapter 3 – Scotland’s Trade – highlights the importance of exports, imports and tourism to Scotland’s economy. Details of key goods markets, value, and the destination / origins of both exports and imports are given. Tourism is a key industry for the Scottish economy and one of Scotland’s six Growth Sectors. This chapter also provides an overview of the modes used by tourists to travel to and from Scotland.

Chapter 4 – Transporting Scotland’s Freight – looks in more detail at how freight is carried both internally within Scotland and also to and from key trading partners using the modes of air, sea, road and rail. The analysis provided helps illustrate the importance of certain transport routes for Scottish businesses and passengers and finds which modes are of more importance for freight movement in Scotland (in terms of volume).

Chapter 5 – Scotland’s Key Transport Hubs – highlights some of the key transport hubs for carrying freight to, from and within Scotland as well as the main networks linking Scotland with the rest of the UK and abroad.

Chapter 6 – Transport Links to Key Trade Destinations – links chapters three and four by highlighting the most prominent transport corridors to each of Scotland’s top trading partner countries. Further detail is provided around the types of goods that Scotland trades with each country, and the likely route of travel for these commodities.

The report relies heavily on data at a Scottish level[1] however, some of the DfT and ORR datasets cannot be disaggregated down to Scotland, and therefore some gaps in time do occur. The overall report however, is able to identify Scotland’s key trade markets, alongside their key transport gateways and networks. The report can therefore help inform the necessary policy tools to ensure Scotland’s transport network is fit for purpose pending global and domestic activity which will undeniably impact the way in which businesses will use Scotland’s transport network in the future.