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Our action plan has been designed on Scotland's existing strengths in subsea engineering, helping our oil and gas companies find new opportunities at home and abroad.

Subsea engineering in Scotland

The Scottish oil and gas industry boasts a subsea engineering cluster that is among the strongest in the world.

Scotland: the home of subsea engineering
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In fact, with almost half of all the world's subsea installations in the North Sea, Scotland is a global leader in the sector.

These strengths mean Scotland is in a strong position to find new opportunities for growth in international markets and to diversify existing skills into other sectors.

The market has significant potential. Although subsea growth has been largely driven by oil and gas, other sectors are now emerging, including subsea mining, defence, renewable energy and aquaculture.

Already Scotland's 370 subsea companies generate annual turnover of £7.5 billion, with the global market currently valued at around £50 billion per year.

To realise our subsea engineering ambitions, we need to make sure the investments are made to:

  • Keep our supply chain competitive
  • Ensure our infrastructure offers appropriate research and testing facilities
  • Offer the technology required for the oil and gas industry and other subsea sectors

Read our action plan (PDF, 371kB)


Case study: Enpro Subsea

Supporting innovation is a key part of our action plan and we aim to help more companies like Enpro Subsea increase their commitment to innovation.

The Aberdeen-based company has announced a £1.5 million investment to support innovation with the launch of a new R&D project aimed designed to maximise economic recovery from subsea wells and reduce costs for operating companies.

A world leader

Many technologies developed in Scotland have revolutionised the worldwide oil and gas industry. With this experience and reputation we can build and maintain what we already have, develop new opportunities and ensure we have the infrastructure we need to remain a world leader.

David Rennie, international sector head, Scottish Development International

We've supported Enpro with a £755,000 R&D grant to help the company design, develop and test the new technology it plans to introduce to the subsea sector. This is the first time we have supported Enpro Subsea.

Ian Donald, Enpro's managing director, said:

"This funding has given Enpro the confidence to continue our product development for local and export markets. This assistance from Scottish Enterprise will enable Enpro to develop the next generation of subsea enhanced production intervention equipment to increase oil recovery and address emerging markets in deeper waters."

David Rennie, international sector head for oil and gas at Scottish Enterprise, said:

"Employing over 20 staff at its site in Aberdeen, Enpro is no stranger to innovation. However, faced by the impact of the current downturn in the sector, our support means the company can deliver this nine month project on schedule, helping strengthen the company’s market position for when the sector recovers and safeguard existing high value oil and gas jobs. I wish the company every success with this project and its longer term growth ambition."


Our subsea focus

We have identified three key areas where our support can have a positive impact on the subsea sector:

  • Position Scotland as a global leader in subsea engineering
  • Increase investment in innovation to grow Scotland's market share in oil and gas and support diversification into other sectors
  • Develop Scotland's subsea innovation infrastructure

Scotland as a global leader: Key actions

Globally recognised

Scotland has the largest concentration of subsea engineering in the world, with Aberdeen recognised globally as a centre of subsea excellence. A stronger supply chain will generate jobs, opportunities and wealth for Scotland as well as securing our world-leading position in subsea.

Neil Gordon, chief executive, Subsea UK

Highlighting our current strengths by:

  • Identifying strategic partnerships with key international companies
  • Developing Scotland's presence in countries where there are significant opportunities

Supporting companies to diversify into new sectors by:

  • Raising awareness of opportunities in other sectors
  • Targeting our support to help companies move into these new markets

Identifying new opportunities in international markets by:

  • Using existing partners and networks like Scottish Development International (SDI) and GlobalScot to help Scottish companies operate in global subsea markets

Increase investment in innovation: Key actions

Increase investment by:

  • Supporting disruptive and wider innovation improvement to increase efficiency and support diversification
  • Identifying key areas of technological challenges and focus our innovation support on these areas
  • Identifying European funding and partnership opportunities that could benefit the Scottish supply chain
  • Promoting Scotland's innovation capabilities to the domestic supply chain

Develop Scotland's subsea innovation infrastructure: Key actions

Develop our infrastructure by:

  • Collaborating with industry and research bodies to consider the need for potential investment in subsea test and demonstration facilities
  • Working with the supply chain and industry bodies to identify infrastructure options based on future technology and diversification requirements
  • Investigating the potential for increased use of open access private sector facilities
  • Working with our partners to ensure the subsea sector is at the heart of the public and private sector offering around innovation and investment

Supporting your subsea company

We're determined to build on Scotland's existing strengths in the subsea sector.

By delivering our action plan, we'll help our subsea companies make the most of the opportunities in this growing sector, both at home and abroad.

Read our action plan (PDF, 371kB)

If your subsea company could benefit from our support, we'd be delighted to find out more about your needs.

Get in touch