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Parliamentary Debates and Questions

S5W-00637: Jackson Carlaw (Eastwood)

Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party

Date lodged: 9 June 2016

To ask the Scottish Government what the legacy has been of the 2014 Commonwealth Games on (a) culture, (b) tourism and (c) external affairs.

Answered by: Aileen Campbell 21 June 2016

The XX Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014 were always about more than 11 days of spectacular sport and culture. The games provided an opportunity to create a lasting legacy for the host city, host country and the Commonwealth.

Culture: The Glasgow 2014 Culture Programme was unprecedented in scale compared to any previous cultural celebration in Scotland. The programme had two strands: a Scotland wide year long programme called Culture 2014 and a citywide games time celebration called Festival 2014. The programme contained over 3,000 performances and 3,600 exhibition days and was delivered by over 10,000 artists and arts professionals, supported by almost 4,000 volunteers.

The Glasgow 2014 Culture Programme was the first Commonwealth Games culture programme to have dual city and nation focus and the first to start a year out from the games. The evaluation of the 2014 Culture programme published in June 2015 reported that the Glasgow 2014 culture programme was a bold and innovative commission, producing work of artistic excellence while offering a mix of fresh and exciting cultural experiences. More than 12,000 events took place with an estimated 2.1 million visits, while over 8,000 artists, and 2,500 organisers.

Tourism: The Commonwealth Games showcased Scotland as a leading visitor destination, profiling the country’s tourism and major event credentials. Glasgow is now one of the world’s top 10 sporting cities, currently ranked 5th in the world in the SportBusiness Ultimate Sports City Awards. Attracting thirteen high quality major sporting events to Commonwealth Games venues. Future events include the 2017 badminton world championships, 2018 Indoor athletic grand prix at the emirates arena, and the European championships 2018. 2014 also provided the springboard for a further significant increase in visitor spending. In 2015, this rose by 14% for domestic visitors (5% overall) to reach £5 billion and is on track to meet the target in the industry-led Tourism Strategy of £5.5 billion by 2020.

External Affairs: During the games we worked to support heads of state/government programmes to showcase the best of Scotland’s trade and investment, culture, education, energy, food and drink and investment opportunities. We have used the engagement with Commonwealth Governments during and post games to:

Maximise diplomatic, business, cultural and international development links;

Promote Scotland as an attractive place in which to do business, invest, live, study and visit;

Highlight our role as a good global citizen.

Highlight our commitment to human rights and LGBT equality – and to provide encouragement and assistance to others as they seek to become fairer, more progressive nations.