Tattoo joins UK government to promote Scottish exports to India
As part of a busy three-day program, UK Government Minister for Scotland Lord Malcolm Offord met with Indian business and political figures to promote the business and cultural bond, supported by performances of the famous Tattoo.
On Thursday (October 21), the Scottish tattoo artists were joined by Indian Bollywood dancers for a stunning collaborative performance at historic St Xavier’s College. The cross-cultural event, designed for maximum impact on India’s huge social media networks, was supported by the Scotch Whiskey Association and organized as part of the UK government’s GREAT campaign.
India, the world’s sixth-largest economy, is a growing market with enormous potential, but currently only accounts for 0.7% of Scottish exports. In 2019, a Scottish government report identified India as one of the top 20 markets for Scottish export growth.
Minister Malcolm Offord, accompanied by tattoo pipers, also launched two large-scale business showcases in the port of Mumbai.
On Friday (October 22), he opened Defense and Security Industry Day aboard one of Britain’s Type 45 destroyers, with attendees from companies such as BAE Systems, Kongsberg Maritime, Babcock and Thales, all of which have solid foundations in Scotland.
He then took Indian officials to tour the aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth, which was assembled in Rosyth, and invited Indian suppliers including Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited and Larsen & Toubro to visit UK shipyards. The companies hope to bid up to Â£ 1 billion in contracts under India’s P-75i submarine program.
On Saturday 23 October Lord Offord will open the GREAT Future Showcase, showcasing innovative UK companies in future mobility, healthcare and life sciences, technology, environment and own growth. The innovations on display will include Polymateria, which allows plastics to biodegrade without harming the natural environment. Their work is the result of a collaboration between the Government of India’s Central Institute of Plastics Engineering and Technology (CIPET) in Bhubaneshwar and Impact Solutions Laboratories in Grangemouth, Scotland.
Minister Malcolm Offord said:
It is an honor to promote Scottish business interests in India, and I am delighted to join the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo as we highlight the enormous amount Scotland has to offer.
From food and beverage to defense and security, life sciences, education and more, I look forward to meeting representatives from a wide range of industries.
The UK government is forging closer ties with countries in Asia, and Scottish jobs and businesses will benefit greatly from these relationships.
India is of particular interest to producers of Scotch whiskey. According to the Scotch Whiskey Association (SWA), whiskey exports to India amounted to Â£ 102million in 2020, with potential for further growth if tariffs were reduced. The SWA joined Minister Malcolm Offord for events as part of the delegation.
Scotch Whiskey Association International Director Ian McKendrick said:
India is the number one trade priority for the Scotch whiskey industry. Unlocking growth by cutting the current tariff by 150% will mean more jobs and investment across the UK, and benefit Indian consumers. Getting a quick deal to reduce the price on Scotch Whiskey is a win-win solution.
These events provide an opportunity to lay the groundwork for future trade negotiations and to highlight the transformational impact that the reduction in the Scotch Whiskey tariff would have on the industry, with the potential to generate more than Â£ 1 billion in revenue. additional exports over five years.
The British Government’s High Commission in India works closely with organizations such as the Scotch Whiskey Association to support Scottish interests in India. The Department for International Trade is also partnering with Scottish Development International to develop trade links between Scotland and India.
The trade visit coincides with HMS Queen Elizabeth and her carrier strike group visiting Mumbai upon returning from her Freedom of Navigation deployment in Asia. British Foreign Minister Liz Truss is also visiting India to meet with her counterparts and discuss mutual interests and cooperation between countries. She is expected to join Lord Offord in Mumbai at a reception later today.