Five international market specialists are to be appointed to support Scottish companies to maximise export opportunities in the energy supply chain.
The collaborative project, funded by the Scottish Government, Scottish Development International (SDI) and Opportunity North East (ONE), will see the appointment of five new energy specialists in markets identified as having significant growth opportunities.
Providing key connections between Scottish businesses and international markets, the new in-market specialists will build a network of customers, government departments, regulators and intermediaries in the USA, Mexico, India, Malaysia and Saudi Arabia. They will also provide one-to-one support for Scottish companies to help improve market access, share local market insights and opportunities, and develop an understanding of key regulatory drivers and market regulation.
Supporting the international growth of Scotland's oil and gas industry and wider energy supply chain for the longer term, with its high-skill jobs and productivity, is an economic priority.
Energy Minister, Paul Wheelhouse, said:
"Our Programme for Government committed to expanding the network of in-market specialists to both identify untapped potential in overseas markets and to support Scotland's export interests.
"I am therefore delighted that by working closely with partners in the industry and the public sector, we are now investing in energy market specialists to support the development of new and existing markets, boosting innovation and skills.
"These five new energy experts will provide a vital conduit between businesses in Scotland's world class energy supply chain and new, international markets - providing knowledge and advice to businesses, and creating the vital networking opportunities that supply chain businesses require to get that all important 'foot in the door'.
"We know from experience in other sectors that this could have a hugely positive impact for those businesses taking advantage of this opportunity to access specialist market expertise and I am delighted that this initiative is well-aligned with the internationalization objectives of Scotland's Oil and Gas Industry Leadership Group."
Trevor Garlick, chair of ONE's Oil, Gas and Energy sector board, said:
"More than half of Scotland's oil, gas and energy supply chain is based in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire. Anchoring the regional supply chain long term, with its high-skill jobs and productivity, is an economic priority for North East Scotland. Internationalisation is key to this and the five new in-market energy specialists will provide an important resource to support established and new exporters increase market share in the global oilfield services and wider energy markets.
"This new partnership between the Scottish Government, Scottish Development International and ONE demonstrates what can be achieved through sharing goals and resources between the private and public sectors. Most importantly, it provides practical, in-country expertise to develop the global potential of our enterprising supply chain and is aligned with the oil and gas industry's Vision 2035 ambition to double supply chain exports long term."
Paul Lewis, SDI Managing Director, said:
"This collaboration is worth far more than the sum of the parts; by working together and pooling our resources, I believe we will achieve even greater results and establish new international opportunities for the Scottish energy supply chain.
"The good news is that we already know this type of approach works; the same model has had a significant impact on the food and drink industry, generating increased exports through in-market specialists opening doors with international customers for companies in Scotland.
"Having a permanent presence in these significant international energy markets will allow us to build strong relationships with key customers, identify new export opportunities for the energy supply chain and reinforce Scotland's place on the international energy map."