Scotland could become a centre for IT outsourcing if the work of a think tank comes to fruition.
The Outsourcing Hub Initiative wants outsourcing services included in the Scottish Government's plans to invest in a number of industry sectors. The Government's plans include promoting sector skills in higher education and giving tax breaks to companies.
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Andrew Rigby, a partner at law firm Brodies in Edinburgh who set up the think tank, predicts Scotland could earn billions of pounds through outsourcing IT services.
"The idea is to develop an industry which provides IT-enabled services specialising in certain industries," said Rigby. "The idea is then to provide onshore location for London and a near shore location forContinental in countries."
He said there is less focus on getting the lowest price and more on the skills available at the higher end of IT outsourcing, such as in software development.
Andrew Rigby said Scotland can provide these skills because it has a high proportion of graduates and has a high standard of education but suffers because most of the talent leaves Scotland to find jobs elsewhere.
"This must change and we need to build industries that will retain them," Rigby said.
He said he wants Scottish Universities to provide skills to create centres of IT outsourcing excellence.