Over half of all survey repondents have reported increased business

British Marine Scotland, the regional association for the Scottish leisure marine industry, has released the findings of a survey designed to identify members’ views on the issues and priorities relevant to the sector in Scotland. The survey was held in May 2019.

The findings show that:

  • Over half (56%) of Scottish marine industry reported increased business
  • Six in 10 businesses stated the Marine Tourism Strategy helped generate growth
  • Nearly 70% of businesses believe the Strategy strengthened development plans

“These figures illustrate that Scotland continues to thrive as a hub for successful marine businesses,” says British Marine Scotland joint chairman, Simon Limb. “We are thrilled members see the Marine Tourism Strategy as a valuable tool and that it has been successful in supporting growth and transforming the profile and recognition of marine tourism in Scotland.”

While the majority (85%) of marine businesses believe that the development of marine infrastructure is vital for the growth of marine tourism in Scotland, businesses did also suggest this needs to be measured to ensure overdevelopment doesn’t harm the unspoilt wilderness of Scottish waters.

Whilst many businesses were positive about the industry, over half (63%) felt that there was a shortfall in marine training in Scotland. A lack of funding and local opportunities were cited as reasons for this, as were issues surrounding attracting a younger workforce into the industry.

The Cross-Party Group on Recreational Boating and Marine Tourism hosted the Marine Trade and Marine Tourism Symposium on 15 November in the Scottish Parliament. It was supported by industry bodies including British Marine Scotland, RYA Scotland, Scottish Canals, Sail Scotland and the British Ports Association.

The Cross-Party Group has been a much-valued forum for the sector and a driving force behind the development of the Marine Tourism Strategy and the redraft for 2020-25.