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In all years between 1998 to 2021, Scotland’s primary income debits have been higher than credits, resulting in a negative net balance or primary income deficit.
In 2021, Scotland’s balance of primary income is provisionally estimated at a deficit of £10.1bn, or 5.6% of GDP.
In 2021 Scotland’s Gross National Income (GNI), including a geographical share of UK extra-regio activity, is estimated at £170.9bn, or 94.4% of Scotland’s GDP of £181.0bn.
Scotland’s GNI has remained below GDP throughout the period from 1998 to 2021, reflecting the primary income deficit over this period. This net outflow of primary incomes is driven by a range of factors including relatively high levels of foreign ownership among Scottish industries including North Sea oil and gas operators, a relatively low proportion of UK companies having headquarters in Scotland, and a large insurance and pension sector with policy holders outside Scotland.
Since 2008 the gap between GNI and GDP has narrowed slightly. On average, between 1998 and 2007 GNI was 90.6% of GDP, between 2008 and 2021 GNI was 92.5% of GDP. GNI reached a high of 97.6% GDP in 2020 before dropping to 94.4% in 2021.
In 2021 the majority of the income flows made a negative contributions to Scottish GNI. The largest negative income flow in 2021 was direct investment (-3.2% of GDP) followed by portfolio investment (-1.4%).
This publication contains estimates of primary income flows and Gross National Income (GNI) for Scotland for the years 1998-2021. This is the first release of these statistics since December 2018, and includes revisions to the previously published figures for 1998 to 2017. The next release, including results up to 2022, is planned for publication in the first half of 2024.
The estimates in this release are consistent with data sourced from Scotland’s Quarterly National Accounts for 2022 Quarter 4, the UK Pink Book 2022 and the UK Economic Accounts for 2022 Quarter 4.
All results in this paper are designated as experimental statistics. These are defined as new official statistics undergoing development and testing. All users should be aware that the results in this paper are provisional and will be revised and updated when further developments are made. They should therefore be used with appropriate caution at this time.