As one of the key drivers behind ‘UK PLC’, Oxfordshire continues to reaffirm a world-leading economic position, with many global organisations highlighting the success of the county's economy – this includes:
- ‘Oxford is the second-best city in the UK for growth potential’ (2018 Arcadis 'Investing in Britain' report)
- ‘Oxford is one of only two non-London Boroughs in the UK’s top-10 for inward venture capital investment’ (Nesta’s ‘State of Small Business’ report – October 2017)
Oxfordshire is now moving into one of its most-exciting periods of growth, with key work set to begin in developing a Local Industrial Strategy (one of just three government-backed trailblazers), the £215m Housing and Growth Deal and the emerging ‘Oxford-Cambridge Corridor’.
As well as having one of the strongest economies in UK, Oxfordshire is globally-competitive across many key sectors – such as automotive, life sciences, space technologies and electronics and sensors.
Key assets in the county include the internationally-renowned and government-backed enterprise zone, Science Vale UK. It boasts world-class research and development sites including; Harwell Campus, Culham Science Centre and Milton Park.
In addition, Oxfordshire is home to the Times Higher Education number one-ranked university in the world, Oxford University – which continues to lead the way in innovative research.
Meanwhile, the Oxfordshire Transformative Technologies Alliance’s science and innovation report says that the county can support the UK to become a ‘global leader’ through digital health, space-led data applications, autonomous vehicles and technologies underpinning quantum computing. If fully-utilised, the four technologies could be worth in the region of £180billion to the UK economy by 2030.
Oxfordshire’s visitor economy is equally impressive. A report commissioned by Experience Oxfordshire showed a significant increase in visitor spend during 2017. The study shows an impressive increase in spend of 6% taking the value of the visitor economy spend to £2.17 billion (around 10% of our current GVA) exceeding the target of 5% growth year on year.
The study shows that the county welcomed nearly 30 million visitors during 2017 which supported nearly 37,000 jobs across the Oxfordshire accounting for 10% of all employment and an also notable increase of 6% compared to the previous year.
Further key reports include:
- Oxford has the second fastest-growing economy of all UK cities (Irwin Mitchell report - autumn 2017)
- Oxford ranked in top 10 nationally and top five (south east) of 324 local authorities (Grant Thornton 'Vibrant Econony Index' - April 2018)
- Oxfordshire’s industrial market is thriving – recording highest half-year figures for business space demand since 2013 in October 2017 (Bidwells report)
- Oxfordshire is the most successful LEP at attracting office occupation in England (CoStar Group report - autumn 2017)
- Oxford is one of the top 10 smart cities anywhere in the UK (Juniper Research report - October 2017)
- Of the 2,790 new businesses created in Oxfordshire in 2011, 49.3% were still in operation in 2016 (ONS report - November 2017)
- South Oxfordshire has one of the highest five-year ‘survival rates’ for SMEs anywhere in the UK (Nesta's 'State of Small Business' report - October 2017)
- Oxford is one of only two non-London Boroughs in the UK’s top-10 for inward venture capital investment (Nesta’s ‘State of Small Business’ report – October 2017)