Yesterday saw the start of VisitScotland’s biggest ever campaign to boost international tourist numbers, as the First Minister attended a major film premiere in Los Angeles.
Alex Salmond was attending Monday June 18th’s release of new Disney/Pixar picture Brave, which tells the story of a forthright princess of the Highlands.
Whilst the LA Film Festival launched the initiative by the country’s tourist group, it is just the start. Whilst in California, Salmond is also meeting with businesses people and politicians. The message to them will be that Scotland is open for tourists and investment.
The new film, which in itself could boost the economy by £140million, is hoped to generate new interest in visiting the country. Salmond said at the launch:
“It is going to give everybody a really warm glow when they think about Scotland.”
Whilst drumming up visitors is a key part of the strategy, securing overseas investment from major business is the real target. More than 70 companies on the west coast of the US have already been approached, with Salmond saying:
“Scotland is a land of major opportunity and it is open for business.”
With many companies still struggling to secure commercial finance in Scotland, acquiring foreign investment is seen as a key strategy for growth.
It is no surprise that the west coast of America has been targeted, with Salmond underlining Scotland’s credentials of success in innovation, creativity and technology over the years. It is hoped that through a partnership of the dollar and home grown talent, a bright future could be created.