Scotland’s oil and gas supply chain suffered a 7% drop in international sales in the 2015/16 financial year, a new report said.
Suppliers raked in £11.4billion from international sales over the 12 months, against £12.2billion the previous year, according to Scottish Enterprise’s latest survey.
David Rennie, head of oil and gas at Scottish Enterprise, said the global oil industry downturn was to blame for the decline.
But Mr Rennie said the picture was far from bleak, thanks partly to growing interest from a number of overseas markets, including the Middle East.
And overseas trading still accounted for just over half of total supply chain sales in 2015/16, at 50.9%.
The £11.4billion total comprised £4.1billion from direct exports and £7.3billion of sales via international subsidiaries.
The number of countries Scotland trades with went up by 15 to 130, while suppliers’ sales to non-oil and gas markets increased to £800million from £500million.
James Bream, research and policy director at Aberdeen Grampian Chamber of Commerce, which delivered the survey, said the rise in non-oil and gas sales showed the sector could diversify.
Mr Bream said: “Anchoring this talent and expertise in Scotland will retain our place at the forefront of the oil and gas industry as well as supporting wider diversification.”
Scottish Business Minister Paul Wheelhouse said the survey showed the supply chain was maintaining its strength in the face of on-going challenges.
The US, Norway, Netherlands, Australia and Canada were the top five markets for international activity during 2015/16.
The US, Norway and the United Arab Emirates are the best bets for growth over the next five years.
The survey drew on responses from 295 companies employing more than 63,000 employees in Scotland.
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