What a year for Scotland and Scotland’s capital city. Our capital is home to our government whose new powers provide new opportunities. Our transport and digital connectivity both within Scotland and internationally, go from strength to strength, blurring the edges of traditional geographical boundaries.
As Edinburgh takes on an increasingly competitive and complex global market, we need to step back from any internal city competition and all join forces to create a truly world famous capital city. Our country, our capital city.
We also continue to develop stronger relationships with many international governments, complementing UK and European government activities which has resulted in the number of Consular offices growing in our Capital City.
Edinburgh provides a natural gateway to nurture and grow our international partnerships.
We have, across Scotland, enjoyed one of our highest global profiles as a country this year, which we must try to harness as much as possible in 2015. Our tourism sector has demonstrated how it can manage a unique event in one location and ensure economic benefit is distributed more widely across the country.
The same effect can be delivered with a step change in marketing our capital city, with greater alignment and co-ordination across several government agencies already making a difference.
We have so many great messages to share with others.
Within Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce, the new year will see the launch of the Capital City Ambassador programme, providing the business community across Scotland with an opportunity to engage and support their capital.
This will include working closely with government at all levels, agreeing formal partnerships with several foreign governments already based in the Capital and working closely with many other institutions who have the same strategic intent.
As global TV audiences welcome in 2015 across the world, following capital city time zones, they will eventually reach Hogmanay celebrations in Edinburgh.
Of course, the celebrations say goodbye to a very famous year in Scotland’s recent history, but it also reminds everyone across the world that Scotland is not only here to stay and grow, but also that the nation knows how to party!
David Birrell is chief executive of Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce