About Export Statistics Scotland

Information on export statistics produced by the Scottish Government.

Export Statistics Scotland (ESS) has previously been published at the end of January each year. The Global Connections Survey (GCS) 2019, which forms the basis of ESS, was due to be carried out in 2020. However, statisticians delayed the survey due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and then to allow businesses to focus on preparing for the end of the EU Exit Transition Period. This delayed the publication of ESS 2019 to October 2021 and has had a subsequent effect on the timing of the ESS 2020 and 2021 publications.

To reduce the delay between collection and publication, statisticians ran the Global Connections Survey for 2020 and 2021 simultaneously, so for the first time two years of data have been collected at the same time.

The next ESS publication (ESS 2021) will contain data for 2019, 2020 and 2021 only and will be published on 29th November 2023.

In accordance with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics, this publication date has been pre-announced in Scottish Government Official Statistics: Forthcoming Publications.

Since the timetable for publication has changed from previous years, we have been able to use a different data source to create the export figures for 2019, 2020, and 2021 in ESS 2021. This improves the accuracy of the annual estimates for these years. However, it also means that the previously published export figures from 2002 - 2018 were produced in a different way than the latest 2019 - 2021 figures, and so cannot be directly compared. However, it is likely that at a later date earlier years will be updated with the new data source, to allow comparisons to be made in a longer time series. ESS 2021 will include an explanation of the change in data source and how it impacts previously published estimates for 2019.


If you have any enquiries relating to these statistics then please contact us at:

Email: exports.statistics@gov.scot

Telephone: 0141 278 4466

Trade Statistics
5th Floor Atlantic Quay 5
150 Broomielaw
G2 8LU

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