Carl Williams, Grant Thornton's North West managing partner
Richard Bell

North West could add £71bn to UK economy by 2025

Unlocking the economic potential of the North West could add £71bn to the UK’s GVA (gross value added) in less than 10 years, potentially creating thousands of new jobs.

Research from business and financial advisory firm Grant Thornton UK LLP has suggested that boosting the average GVA per worker in every region of Britain – bringing it in line with the average across the other G7 states (US, Germany, France, Italy, Japan and Canada) – would contribute £479bn in national growth.

The study found that of all the regions in the UK, the North West could make the biggest contribution to the UK’s overall GVA by 2025.

The UK is lagging behind other G7 nations in terms of export market value and productivity levels, according to the report, with productivity in the North West believed to be at 90% of the UK average.

Elsewhere, the Grant Thornton analysis claimed that boosting the export market by 18%, making it responsible for 45% of the country’s GDP as is the case in Germany, would add £84bn to the economy.

At present, the North Went accounts for just 9% of the UK’s exports, putting it behind London, the South East and the West Midlands.

Grant Thornton’s North West managing partner, Carl Williams, said: “This new analysis makes for fascinating reading for anybody with an interest in the economic growth potential of the North West region as a whole.

“It shines light directly onto the fundamental and structural discrepancies faced by businesses here.”

He continued: “These discrepancies can be read as weaknesses but we much prefer to see them as challenges and opportunities.”

Speaking further, Carl called the North West “the homeland of the industrial revolution” and said he believes entrepreneurism is “alive and well” in the region.

Sacha Romanovitch, the CEO of Grant Thornton UK LLP, commented: “Today’s research has revealed significant potential across the UK.

“We believe that addressing at root some of the UK’s fundamental social and economic challenges collaboratively can create vibrant cities and communities across the UK, where businesses and people can flourish.”

She added: “Grant Thornton is today beginning an 18 month long, nationwide Inquiry into what it will take to build a vibrant economy. We want to use the combined knowledge of our company, our clients and our networks to bring people and organisations together to develop the ideas and partnerships on which a vibrant economy will be built.”

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