Hopes are high that a summit between business leaders in Aberdeen and Sweden could lead to new opportunities for the north-east.
Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce held an event with their Swedish counterparts to discuss the shared challenges they have faced, as well as the possibility of collaborating in the future.
Leaders hope it will lead to improved connections on both sides of the North Sea.
Following the initial meeting they believe the link-up could lead to greater opportunities for firms in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire.
It is also hoped it could speed up the energy transition process and facilitate a move away from reliance on oil and gas.
‘Firms see opportunities’
Seona Shand, commercial director at AGCC, said: “What is evident is that north-east firms see opportunity in doing business with our European partners across a number of sectors from gaming, food and drink, renewable energy and life sciences to fintech, edtech (education technology) and cyber security, all of which will be examined in more detail in the second part of this mission in September.
“Much of the information-sharing in this first session focused on questions around licencing and technologies for Scottish firms, as well as understanding the changes in employment and immigration following our departure from the EU; whereas the Swedish businesses taking part were asking about the opportunities around investing in Scotland, which is a positive sign of how attractive both the Aberdeen city region and Scotland as a whole are to international organisations.”
50 attendees at summit
The event, which was attended by more than 50 participants, was hosted by West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine MP Andrew Bowie.
It will be followed by a second event later this year.
“I was delighted to be involved with the first north-east/Swedish summit of its kind, and would like to thank the respective chambers of commerce for the opportunity to introduce it,” Mr Bowie said.
“I look forward to the second day later in the year.
“Sweden is in a very similar place to Scotland in terms of energy transition, away from oil and gas towards sustainable development. Their industries are also looking to the Earth’s future as well as providing high-quality jobs for their workforce.”
AGCC is to host another trade mission on June 24. It will focus on the opportunities in hydrogen in Aberdeen and the Baden-Württemberg region in Germany.