Overseas sales of Scottish goods have seen a further rise compared to 2012, though official figures have shown a slight drop this year.
According to the Scottish Chambers of Commerce (SCC), exports from Scotland increased by 2.5 percent in the opening quarter of the year compared to Q1 2012. However, through the course of 2013, sales from abroad actually dropped by 1.4 percent.
Food and drink sales increased again, and now account for 32 percent of all exports from the country and, along with petrochemicals, which hold a 24 percent share of the market, are the strongest performers.
Many of the companies have developed even faster after overhauling their financial strategies. With invoices increasingly being paid later, for example, factoring is helping many to take advantage of export opportunities.
Talking about the continued strength of Scottish exports, the SCC chief executive, Liz Cameron, said:
“Business optimism and performance in Scotland has been picking up since the beginning of this year and signs of growth in exporting are extremely encouraging as we seek a return to healthy levels of growth in our economy.”
The news was also welcomed by finance secretary John Swinney, who highlighted the returning strength to the manufacturing arena.
Further good news in manufacturing came from a recent survey. Research from the Confederation of British Industry Scotland found growing optimism in the industry. It is thought to be the first time in more than 10 months that the survey has produced positive results.