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Gross Domestic Product for Scotland for the 4th Quarter of 2003

DescriptionGross Domestic Product for Scotland for the 4th Quarter of 2003
Official Print Publication Date
Website Publication DateApril 28, 2004


Statistics Publication Notice
Economy Series

Gross Domestic Product for Scotland for the 4th Quarter of 2003

28 th April 2004

A Scottish Executive National Statistics Publication

This document is also available in pdf format (198k)

Gross Domestic Product in Scotland rose by 1.7 per cent over 2003 and by 0.2 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2003 according to provisional estimates released today by the Scottish Executive.

The main findings of the latest figures are:

  • GDP rose by 1.7 per cent over 2003 and by 0.2 per cent in 2003 Q4 (seasonally adjusted).
  • The equivalent UK figures show that GDP rose by 1.8 per cent over 2003 and by 0.8 per cent in 2003 Q4.
  • In 2003 output in the Scottish service sector grew by 2.3 per cent, compared with a 1.6 per cent drop in the production sector and a 5.7 per cent rise in construction. The UK figures showed 2.2 per cent growth in services, a 0.5 per cent drop in production and 5.0 per cent growth in construction.
  • The production sector is the main driver of growth in the latest quarter, representing a change from the recent trend whereby the service sector has been driving growth. Over 2003, the service sector remains the main source of growth.

Sectoral Analysis:

  • Output in the manufacturing sector grew by 0.6 per cent in 2003 Q4 following a period of decline since 2000. Over 2003, manufacturing declined by 2.2%.
  • Within manufacturing, the sectors driving the quarterly increase were chemicals & manmade fibres (3.0% over the quarter) and engineering & allied industries (2.7% over the quarter).
  • There was strong growth in electricity, gas and water supply in 2003 Q4 (9.7% over the quarter and 1.2% over 2003). This was partly down to a change from lower growth in this sector for Q2 and Q3.
  • Over the latest quarter, the service sector declined by 0.2%. Within this sector, retail & wholesale experienced a fall of 1.4% and financial services a fall of 1.0%. In contrast, other services grew by 2.8% over the quarter.

NEXT PUBLISHED (Provisionally): 28 th July 2004


Table 1: Gross Value Added chained volume measures at basic prices, by category of output
Table 2: Gross Value Added chained volume measures at basic prices, by category of output
Table 3: Gross Value Added chained volume measures at basic prices: service industries
Table 4: Gross Value Added chained volume measures at basic prices: detailed service industries
Table 5: Gross Value Added chained volume measures at basic prices: production industries
Table 6: Gross Value Added chained volume measures at basic prices: detailed production industries
Table 7: Gross Value Added chained volume measures at basic prices by category of output
Table 8: Revisions to data published on 8 April 2004 (Table 2)
Table 9: Revisions to data published on 11 February 2004 (Table 3)
Table 10: Revisions to data published on 11 February (Table 4)
Table 11: Revisions to data published on 11 February 2004 (Table 5)
Table 12: Revisions to data published on 11 February 2004 (Table 6)
Table 13: Revisions to data published on 11 February 2004 (Table 7)


1. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is a measure of the value of goods and services produced by residents, before allowing for depreciation or capital consumption. Net receipts from interest, profits and dividends abroad are excluded. The estimates produced in this publication measure GDP at basic prices (also referred to as gross value added (GVA)).

2. From 2003 Q3, the Scottish GDP estimates moved to annually weighted and chained estimates of volume measures - referred to as "annual chainlinking" - as recommended in the System of National Accounts 1993. This is consistent with the UK where this approach was introduced on 30 September 2003 in respect of the 2003 Q2 results. Annual chainlinking is achieved by producing a weighted average of over 260 separate indices (160 of which are in the production sector). The indices represent changes in the value added, at constant prices, in the production of goods and services in individual industries. These industries are compiled using the standard industrial classification SIC2003.

3. The main difference between chainlinking and the previous "fixed base" methodology is that the weights applied to each industry (reflecting importance in the Scottish economy) are updated on an annual basis, instead of a 5-yearly basis. One major effect of chainlinking has been to reflect the reducing importance of sectors which had been performing less well - hence reducing the negative impact of their low/negative growth, and increasing the importance of those which had been performing well - increasing the effect of their positive growth. Both of these changes have had a positive effect on the level of growth estimated by the GDP series. Another important effect is caused by price change. If prices in a particular industry fall over time, (e.g. electronics), despite high growth in the volume of output (as measured by the GDP index), the industry's relative value can decrease, and hence the weight will fall. A paper on the effects of chainlinking on Scottish GDP providing a more detailed explanation of the new methodology and its effects is available on the Scottish Executive internet site www.scotland.gov.uk/gdp .

4. Series are derived from indicators based on data from a wide range of sources. Examples include: deflated turnover, deflated production, the volume of a good or service sold or produced and, for some parts of the public sector, employee numbers.

5. The quarterly Scottish GDP estimates are published within 4 months (approximately 17 weeks) of the end of the quarter to which they relate.

6. The indices published within this Statistics Publication Notice are grouped according to the 2003 revised Standard Industrial Classification. The four broad groupings of industries are

(a) agriculture, hunting, forestry and fishing
(b) production which comprises: mining and quarrying industries; energy and water supply; and manufacturing, which includes: refined petroleum products and nuclear fuel; chemical and man-made fibres; metal and metal products; engineering and allied industries; food, drink and tobacco industries; textiles, footwear, leather and clothing; other manufacturing.
(c) construction
(d) services, which includes: retail and wholesale; hotels and catering; transport, storage and communication; financial services; real estate and business services; public administration, education and health; other services.

7. Scottish GDP estimates will generally be more volatile than the estimates for the UK for a number of reasons. Primarily in a small open economy such as Scotland, quarterly measures can be significantly affected by results for a small number of large companies. In addition, the equivalent UK figures are produced by balancing 3 independent sets of estimates (Output (GVA), Income & Expenditure-based approaches). Furthermore, the survey data tend to be based on smaller numbers of units, making figures for Scotland more likely to be subject to small random fluctuations.

8. Estimates of the cash value of gross value added (GVA) at current prices for Scotland (and other regions of the UK) are produced by the Office for National Statistics. Revised and updated estimates covering the period 1989 - 2001 were released by ONS in August 2003. Estimates for 2002 are due to be published on 30 th April 2004. The ONS current price value estimates are methodologically different from the Scottish Executive volume (constant price) index and are based on different data sources.

9. The figures in this Statistics Publication Notice incorporate revisions due to new and revised data, and the updating of seasonal adjustment factors. Where appropriate, the data suppliers have verified these changes. Tables 8 - 13 identify the extent of revisions since the last publication in February 2004. The series most affected by revisions this quarter are:

  • Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing - due to revised input data provided by data suppliers for agriculture and forestry;
  • Construction - due to the revision of deflators by the Department for Trade & Industry;
  • Transport, Storage & Communication - due to the revision of deflators by the Office for National Statistics;

A number of other series are affected by revisions to a lesser extent. These are mainly due to revisions to input data and adjustments to seasonal factors.

10. National Statistics are produced to high professional standards set out in the National Statistics Code of Practice. They undergo regular quality assurance reviews to ensure that they meet customer needs. They are produced free from any political interference.

11. Detailed results for al industries are available to download from the Scottish Executive website www.scotland.gov.uk/gdp .

Mercury/ Profile users may obtain a copy of the tables by calling the number below.

Issued by
Office of the Chief Economic Adviser
Office of the Permanent Secretary
St Andrew's House
Regent Road
Edinburgh EH1 3DG


Press Office:

Barry Winter



Julie Ramsay