|2 December 2015|

Scotland’s first minister Nicola Sturgeon is encouraging businesses to boost productivity by prioritising ‘innovation and internalisation’ using the worldwide network of the Chambers of Commerce.

She will praise the work of the chambers at its Scottish annual dinner in promoting and supporting Scottish businesses internationally.

The first minister said: “At the heart of our own Scottish Business Pledge we celebrate internationalisation as a key attribute of ambitious businesses – and a key driver of innovation and productivity growth. It goes hand-in-hand with progressive practices such as gender equality, the living wage and fair work policies.

“Our ambition is to see Scotland match the productivity levels of the strongest economies in Europe. We will intensify our support for internationalisation and work with Chambers and others to support businesses of all sizes expand in uncharted waters.

“In the last six years the value of our international exports increased by 40 per cent and Scottish Development International helped more than 2,500 companies in the last year to explore overseas markets. I want to build on these successes and see our global profile continue to grow.

“Our Innovation and Investment Hubs will be up and running in Dublin, Brussels and London next year. They will provide places for government, our agencies and public partners and the private sector, to make international connections that will boost exports and inward investment. They will promote the research and innovation excellence of our businesses and universities and enhance international collaboration.

“We are determined to do everything we can to help businesses invest, innovate, export and expand. We want even more firms to commit to boosting their productivity through innovation, internationalisation, fair work and increased diversity in the workplace.”