New figures for the Aerospace, Defence and Space sectors show they are worth £6.4bn to the Scottish economy, with the rapidly growing space sector making the largest single contribution.

ADS, the trade association for the industries in Scotland and the rest of the UK, released its first Industry Facts and Figures guide for Scotland, setting out the strength of the three sectors, and detailing the organisation’s priorities for the year ahead in 2018.

The ADS Scotland 2017 Industry Facts & Figures guide shows:

  • The Space sector is now the largest of the three industries in Scotland with an annual turnover of £2.5bn, compared to £2bn for Aerospace and £1.9bn for Defence.
  • Defence is the biggest employer, with 11,400 people working in the sector. Space has 7,200 employees in Scotland, and Aerospace 7,700 – taking the total across ADS’ industries to more than 26,000 employees.
  • As each sector invests in training and developing a highly skilled workforce for the future, there are more than 800 apprentices employed across the three sectors.

Key priorities for ADS Scotland in the year ahead include promoting global investment and export opportunities for its sectors, and working with industry to make sure Scottish businesses are prepared and well placed to succeed after Brexit.

ADS Chief Executive Paul Everitt said:

“Our industries are making a great contribution to prosperity in communities across Scotland, providing thousands of jobs in these high value manufacturing sectors.

“All three sectors are highly productive, innovative and generating long-term growth. The rapid expansion of the space sector shows the new opportunities that are being developed by innovative companies here in Scotland.

“The years ahead of us will bring further opportunities to boost exports and create new jobs, as well as the challenge of making sure we are prepared to succeed after Brexit. We will be working closely with companies in our sectors across Scotland to make sure they continue to enjoy the best possible conditions for business success.”

The 2017 Industry Facts & Figures guide is published on the day of the ADS Scotland Parliamentary Reception at Holyrood.

At the event MSPs will have the opportunity to meet more than 100 apprentices and senior representatives from 35 companies, to discuss careers in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects, as well as other key issues affecting ADS industries in Scotland.