Economic links with North America
Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop is to travel to Canada and the USA to strengthen business, economic and cultural links, and further promote a dynamic and creative Scotland as a great place to visit and invest.
As well as showcasing all that is great about Scotland during St Andrew's Day celebrations in Toronto, Ottawa and Washington DC, the Culture and External Affairs Secretary will hold talks with Government Ministers and politicians in Canada and the US. Ms Hyslop will also undertake a series of business, travel trade and cultural engagements.
Ms Hyslop said:
"Scotland's bonds of kinship and friendship with Canada and the USA are deep and strong, and both countries are vitally important to our economy. The USA is our single largest overseas market and Canada is a major tourism market for Scotland.
"There is huge enthusiasm for Scotland all over North America. In a challenging economic environment, we must capitalise on that interest and continue to nurture longer-term relationships and foster real prosperity for our country. St Andrew's Day is the ideal platform to raise Scotland's profile internationally as a dynamic and creative nation, not just in cultural but also economic terms.
"Working with Scottish Development International and VisitScotland, I will undertake a series of business, travel trade and cultural engagements aimed at strengthening Scotland's economic growth and building future prosperity.
"In September, the First Minister and I welcomed the new Canadian High Commissioner Gordon Campbell to Scotland. We committed to working together to promote our common strengths - world-class education systems, internationally-recognised research communities, highly skilled workforces, and thriving creative industries - and I look forward to discussing that further during my visit to the Canadian Parliament in Ottawa and meetings with Federal and Provincial Ministers."
Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop will visit Toronto, Ottawa and Washington DC from November 28 to December 3, 2011.
The Scottish Government's Canada and USA Plans make it clear that these are priority countries for engagement. The Plans build on the strength of the existing relationship between Scotland and both countries, aim to further strengthen the important historical, cultural and economic links between our countries, to ensure that Scotland maximises the economic opportunities that both markets have to offer for the future.
The promotion of Scotland in the USA and Canada is supported by a multi agency approach - 'Team Scotland' that includes representatives from the Scottish Government, Scottish Development International and VisitScotland.
Scotland's Winter Festivals begin with St Andrew's Day on November 30 and includes Scotland's Christmas and Hogmanay celebrations, culminating with Burns night on January 25. Events and celebrations will begin on the weekend leading to St Andrew's Day (November 26 and 27) and run through Christmas and Hogmanay until Burns Night and will bring together lovers of all things Scottish from across the globe.