The Year of Coasts and Waters 2020 has been launched at a special event in China by Scotland’s Minister for Trade, Investment and Innovation, Ivan McKee.
VisitScotland hosted the launch event in Beijing where Mr McKee outlined the exciting themed activity on the horizon.
The Minister is in China, the world’s second largest economy, to promote trade and investment, educational and cultural links between China and Scotland. Mr McKee will undertake a series of high-level business and government meetings, as well as cultural engagements, aimed at strengthening relationships between the two countries.
Scotland’s coasts and waters have shaped the country’s history: from fishing and textiles to whisky and wave power, they have influenced its culture, stories and way of life. In celebration of this, a year-long programme of events and activities will be held across Scotland with VisitScotland encouraging Chinese visitors to dive in and explore these vital elements of Scotland’s landscape.
A total of six initial events, designed to whet the appetite for what’s in store, have already been announced with many more to be revealed later in the year.
This includes The Fife Regatta, an expanded Clydebuilt Festival, and Edinburgh International Film Festival will present Scotland’s Shores, featuring classic film screenings and a special outdoor coastal experience.
RSPB will celebrate DolphinFest 2020 off the coast of Aberdeen, while Scotland’s Boat Show and Kip Marina will make a splash with a brand new special event ‘River of Light’. The National Theatre of Scotland will deliver, Ferry Tales, an exciting new production, celebrating Scotland’s surrounding waters and the journeys over them made by thousands of residents and tourists.
The Year of Coast and Waters 2020 will focus on four over-arching themes: our Natural Environment and Wildlife, Historic Environment and Cultural Heritage, Activities and Adventure and Food and Drink. The themed year will drive home the message of responsible engagement and participation around and in our waters and coastal environments by the people of Scotland and its visitors.
Minister for Trade, Investment and Innovation Ivan McKee said: “I am delighted to be launching Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters 2020 in China. Our rich culture and history mean that Scotland has much to offer Chinese visitors and investors and I hope that many choose to visit our country in 2020 and beyond. I look forward to the upcoming year-long programme of events and activities that is being put together to celebrate this incredible aspect of Scotland.”
VisitScotland Chief Executive Malcolm Roughead said: “It is wonderful to have the Minister for Trade launching the Year of Coasts and Waters to one of our key international markets.
“At VisitScotland we have worked hard to develop and share an understanding of Chinese culture and ensure that, as a country, we are a China friendly destination, for both visitors and the global business community. It is therefore vital for Scotland the we continue to foster the valuable relationship between our two countries.
“Our coasts and waters play an important part in the visitor experience, and so VisitScotland is delighted to introduce this Themed Year to China, highlighting Scotland’s diverse scenery, traditions and produce. We look forward to 2020 when we celebrate the life-blood of our country.”