Area Information

Inner Moray Firth - key sectors

Like much of the Highlands and Islands, Inner Moray Firth has a strong public administration sector, accounting for 23 per cent of the area's £2.3 billion GVA.

Other sectors accounting for thousands of jobs include manufacturing (16 per cent), wholesale and retail (15 per cent), and financial and business services (14 per cent).

The energy sector has been highly significant in the past, and looks set for a strong future. The Nigg fabrication yard was a key manufacturing site during the boom years of North Sea oil and gas development in the late 20th century, boasting Europe's largest dry dock. It remains a prime asset for the region, with considerable potential in 21st century renewable energy manufacturing. At the same time, oil and gas continue to play a key role in the region's energy sector.

The area gained a foothold in the global life sciences sector when HIE helped Inverness Medical set up in the 1990s.

As Lifescan Scotland, the business now employs around 1,300 people developing and manufacturing self-test kits for people with diabetes and is part of the multinational Johnson and Johnson. It is Scotland's biggest life sciences business, and at the centre of a growing cluster which includes dozens of smaller employers.

Lifescan also has a presence in the Centre for Health Science, next to Raigmore Hospital. The centre was developed by HIE as a hub for life sciences in the region, and incorporates university teaching and research with laboratory, lecture and business incubator space.

Inner Moray Firth includes several of Scotland's premier visitor attractions and the tourism sector has been a vital part of the economy for many years.

HIE is working with the local industry to ensure the area's tourism product meets visitors' high expectations and continues to have a bright future.

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