The Scottish electronics sector [May 2001]

Marsh, Richard (2001) The Scottish electronics sector [May 2001]. Quarterly Economic Commentary, 26 (2). pp. 22-23. ISSN 0306-7866

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The closure of Motorola's mobile phone plant in Bathgate and the loss of over 3,000 jobs has raised concerns over the future of the Scottish electronics industry. Many other electronics companies have warned of further job cuts on the horizon due to weakening demand. Some have mooted relocation to countries in Eastern and Central Europe where production costs such as labour are a fraction of those in Scotland. The development of an electronics 'cluster' within Scotland was intended to increase job security, opportunities and value added within the economy. The sector's downturn is therefore bad news for Scottish economic growth. This then begs the questions what are the underlying forces causing the recent developments and do they spell the end for 'Silicon Glen'?