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UK Foreign-Owned Businesses Generate £326.5 billion

Recently, the Office of National Statistics released a report titled Annual Business Survey: UK non-financial business economy foreign-owned businesses. The report revealed in 2015, there were just over two million registered non-financial businesses in the UK, of which just 1.1% (24,141) were owned by businesses outside of the UK (foreign-owned.)

Being the case, Turner Little decided to consider what percentage of the UK’s 10 biggest non-financial industries are foreign owned, compared to all UK-owned business.

It was discovered the manufacturing industry holds the highest number of foreign-owned business, at 2.9% (3,704.) Followed closely by the wholesale and retail trade (1.8%; 6,192) and the information and communication sector (1.5%; 2,848.)

However, despite such a small number of foreign-owned companies existing in the UK, collectively, non-financial foreign-owned industries contributed £326.5bn in approximate gross value added (aGVA) in 2015; a contribution of 28.5% to total aGVA in the UK.

(N.B. ‘aGVA’ is a productivity measure that tallies up the net value of goods and services produced.)

Furthermore, since 2008 aGVA for foreign-owned businesses increased by 32.1% from £247.1 billion, compared with an increase from UK-owned businesses of 23.9%. The largest contribution came from the non-financial services sector where the level of aGVA for foreign-owned businesses increased by 67.4% over the period.

London was revealed to be the region with the largest proportion of foreign-owned businesses in 2015, at 19.6% – contributing the highest proportion of foreign-owned aGVA, with 25.6% of the total. Europe was also highlighted an asset, the greatest contributor to foreign-owned businesses’, with 49.5% of the total.

Photo credit: xieyuliang/Shutterstock 

In fact, since 2008 aGVA from European-owned businesses increased by 42% compared with a rise of 12.8% from the next highest contributor, the Americas: businesses owned in Asia experienced growth of 93.6% over the same period.

James Turner, managing director of TurnerLittle.com, adds:

“As we face the post-Brexit free fall it is important to remember that, though foreign-owned business is performing exceptionally well in the UK; so too is British-owned business.

The sheer number of UK companies in comparison to foreign-owned companies proves we have the potential to harness power and production right here in the UK, to at the very least compete and safeguard our future – should we meet with dissipation.”

Turner Little and its affiliates do not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. Material on this page has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction.