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Global Britain Commission: £474 billion economic prize for boosting exports


The debut report from the Global Britain Commission has suggested how embracing ‘global Britain’ could deliver a £474 billion economic boost through increased export activity. 

The commission, led by former trade secretary Liam Fox, brings together some of the UK’s leading businesses to help make a success of Brexit, and drive the government’s global agenda. 

Released just four months following the commission’s launch in October last year, this first report covers a range of areas including what ‘global Britain’ means, why it matters and analysis of the size of the prize for local firms and the economy as a whole. 

Key takeaways include:

  • Raising per capita exports of goods and services to the level of Germany would mean an additional £474bn of UK exports annually.
  • This £474bn export boost could create up to 5.5m export-supporting jobs with a 7% higher-than-average pay. 
  • The US has the 19th highest rate of outward FDI per capita in the OECD. Raising this to match France’s level would equate to an additional £33bn of FDI outflow per year. 
  • The UK would see an extra £61bn of R&D investment if investment levels per person were raised to that seen in South Korea, supporting 1.9m jobs in the process. 
  • Raising the UK’s per-person venture capital investment levels to that of the US would be equivalent to an additional £19bn of VC funding each year. 

You can read the report in full here.

In his introduction, Dr Fox noted that: “The UK remains one of the world’s top destinations for inward investment for well-defined reasons; a well understood and respected legal system; a skilled workforce with relatively (at least in a European context) liberal labour laws; some of the world’s top universities, open to business collaboration; a stable regulatory environment; moderate taxation policy; a vibrant tech sector; good IP protection and a creative and innovative environment for business start-ups.

“All these elements form a sound basis for future prosperity if we take full advantage of these factors and develop our competitive advantages further. As a huge services producer and exporter, we offer many of the products that developing countries will require to develop their economic and social capacities.”

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