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Scotland's construction facts

Scan Building Services, pictured on Dundee Law, Dundee.

Construction industry in Scotland

Latest stats and facts on Scotland's construction industry. Published February 2021.

Supply chain profile

The construction industry is made up of a wide range of sub sectors and specialisms, from

  • A supply chain of materials producers (timber, aggregates, cement, etc.), through to
  • Component producers (mechanical/electrical, building products and construction systems), major, minor and specialist contractors, to
  • Architecture, design, finance, project management and engineering expertise

The industry is spread throughout Scotland with concentrations in the central belt and north east. But employment exists in all parts of Scotland, including all rural areas where construction jobs are of significant importance.

School of Simulation and Visualisation (formerly Digital Design Studio) at Glasgow School of Art.

Scottish construction stats

21,100 companies

11.8% of Scotland's total companies (2020)

143,000 employment*

5.5% of Scotland's total employment (2019)

£7.8bn GVA*

5.5% of Scotland's GVA (2018)

Offsite Construction Hub, winners of the Collaboration Prize 2016

International reputation

Although the industry's dominant market is the UK, Scotland has an international reputation for architecture and design, value engineering and project management, and increasingly, low carbon products and technologies.

The construction industry can play a significant role in responding to the climate crisis and net zero opportunity through adopting new practices and developing innovative products and processes.

Scotland's construction exports are worth £150 million0.4% of Scotland's total international exports (2018).

Construction Scotland, the industry leadership group, has launched an industry led Construction Scotland Innovation Centre (CSIC), and in 2017 opened its Advanced Construction factory.

CSIC delivers Higher Education Institution support and expertise, and speeds development of new construction products, systems and services by businesses.

Company insight

Construction companies surveyed between August and December 2020
Biggest challenges
  • 76% report impact of Covid-19
  • 24% report wider political and economic uncertainty
Biggest opportunities
  • 33% developing new markets
  • 33% maximising existing clients and markets

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