Milton Keynes To Grow By £600m Over The Next Two Years
Overseas investment and an economy rich in services and tech-based firms will mean Milton Keynes will be home to one of the UK’s fastest growing economies by the end of 2023 - according to a new business report.
The UK Powerhouse study, which has been produced by Irwin Mitchell and the Centre for Economics & Business Research (Cebr), analyses 50 of the largest local economies by employment and GVA growth.
In the latest report, Milton Keynes is predicted to see year-on-year GVA growth of 2.6% in Q4 2023.
The report highlights Milton Keynes’ advantageous location within the Oxford-Cambridge Arc - a region identified as being of global importance for innovation and business activity. It adds that the city’s growth is boosted by its high productivity levels and prevalence of business start-ups.
Future investment in the region will not only boost Milton Keynes - the report predicts Cambridge and Oxford’s 2.5% year-on-year growth in employment by the end of 2023 will be the fastest in the UK.
It adds that Milton Keynes as well as Oxford, Peterborough, Reading, Brighton and Inner London are home to a cluster of tech businesses, a sector that has been a key driver of the UK’s growth in recent years.
UK Powerhouse also examines the latest trends in Foreign Direct Investment into the UK.
Although both London and the South East have seen a 23% annual dip in the number of FDI projects in 2020/21, the vast majority of investment was in these locations.
The report says the dominance of London and the South East when it comes to FDI levels contributes to the continued contrast in economic outcomes between the South and North of England.
Bryan Bletso, Partner and head of International at Irwin Mitchell, said: “FDI brings potential for higher productivity and improved economic output for many years into the future. There are signs that despite a fall in the number of projects last year compared to the previous 12 months, more recent data from the United Nations points to a strong recent recovery.
“We are certainly seeing some encouraging signs with an increase in enquiries from organisations looking to invest here and as a national firm we seeing FDI activities spread across much of our national footprint.”
Josie Dent, Managing Economist at Cebr and one of the report’s authors, said: “The economy is still expected to face some turbulence between now and the end of next year, notably through volatility in commodity prices, supply chain pressures, and the emerging cost-of-living crisis domestically. All of these factors are set to impact growth both at the aggregate level and, to a varying extent, within individual cities.
“This report highlights that much of the fastest growth during next year will be concentrated in the South. Locations such as Milton Keyes, Cambridge and Oxford have economies which are dominated by fast-growth sectors and they have also been hot spots for overseas’ investment. If economic levelling up is to be tackled effectively, these two issues must be recognised and quickly addressed.”