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Business Dynamics: The UK

January 2021

Based on the Ease of Doing Business Index 2020, the UK remained one of the best countries to conduct business in both globally and regionally. The UK offers exceptional conditions that make starting a new business, obtaining a construction permit or securing financing a relatively easy process. Nevertheless, contract enforcement and trading across borders remain more challenging from a regional standpoint, especially now the UK has left the EU.

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Overview:

The Country Briefings series examine market potential, economic and consumer trends impacting each country and how they are set to change.

Each Country Briefing covers one of these topics:

Economy, Finance and Trade: Understanding the structure, health and potential risks of an economy are important for decision-making within an existing operating environment as well as for expansion strategies. Real GDP growth, inflation and exchange rate fluctuations will directly impact consumer market potential. Import and export trade profiles help gauge how open an economy is to trade and investment, while analysis of government finances can be used to explore macroeconomic stability and susceptibility to economic shocks.

Income and Expenditure: Insights into income, wealth and expenditure of consumers are vital in helping businesses make strategic decisions with regards to which country (or even which region within a country) to enter, which consumer segment to target, which products or services to market, and at which price point. Other factors such as the size and expansion of the middle class and income inequality are also important in helping companies gauge the potential of a country market.

Households: Global shifts in gender, ageing, migration and housing are transforming the size, location,  general make-up as well as income and expenditure of households around the globe, with diverse implications for governments and companies. Households insights can help identify the decision-making processes and consumption tastes of different household groups and types within a country, and assess household appliance and digital readiness that is key for formulating market technology and internet strategies.

Business Dynamics: A stable and competitive business environment is vital to operate efficiently and attract inward investment. Businesses can assess these factors alongside challenges such as corruption, political instability and terrorism, also gain insight into business operating environment and make strategic investment decisions. Transport infrastructure, ICT readiness and labour force dynamics will also identify potential issues with a supply chain and the level of workforce skills.

Sustainability: Insights on key sectors directly related to the environmental sustainability of a country such as energy, water, pollution, environmental resilience, forest and biodiversity and food and agriculture help businesses to make strategic decisions in relation to environmental and sustainability trends, improve brand reputation and ensure long-term operations while ultimately growing the bottom line.

The briefings cover 103 countries and identify topics of crucial interest to planners, marketers and researchers.

Business Dynamics: The UK

HEADLINES

OPERATIONAL AND REGULATORY ENVIRONMENT

The UK to continue to have one of the best business landscapes, despite Brexit

FINANCING AND INVESTMENT

The UK to lose its position in relation to euro-denominated share trading to European stock exchanges

SKILLS AND LABOUR

Labour pool to remain one of the most skilled, yet EU student numbers are anticipated to drop

TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURE

The UK secured no tariffs or quotas in the new deal between with the EU

DIGITALISATION AND INNOVATION

The UK is set to remain a member of the Horizon Europe programme 2021-2027

OPERATIONAL AND LEGAL ENVIRONMENT

Chart 1 Operational and Legal Environment Key Indicators Chart 2 Ease of Doing Business Ranking by Pillar Regional Comparison 2020 Chart 3 Ease of Doing Business Ranking Regional Comparison 2015-2020 Chart 4 Ease of Doing Business Indicators: Time Needed to Start/Close a Business 2020 Chart 5 Ease of Doing Business Indicators: Costs Incurred to Start and Operate a Business 2020 Chart 6 Tax Rates 2020 Chart 7 Insolvency Recovery Rate by Secured Creditors in the UK and Regional Comparison 2020 Chart 8 Global Competitiveness Ranking by Pillar in the UK and Regional Comparison 2019 Chart 9 Global Competitiveness Ranking for the UK and Regional Comparison 2014-2019 Chart 10 Global Competitiveness Index: Macroeconomic Stability Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2014-2019 Chart 11 Index of Economic Freedom Ranking by Pillar in the UK and Regional Comparison 2020 Chart 12 Index of Economic Freedom Ranking Over Time 2015-2020 Chart 13 Index of Economic Freedom: Judicial Effectiveness Pillar Rank in the UK and Regional Comparison 2017-2020 Chart 14 Index of Economic Freedom: Government Integrity Pillar Rank in the UK and Regional Comparison 2015-2020 Chart 15 Number of New Businesses and Annual Real GDP Growth in the UK 2015-2020 Chart 16 New Business Density in the UK Compared to Regional Average 2015-2020 Chart 17 Operational Environment in the UK and Regional Comparison 2019 Chart 18 Corruption Perceptions Ranking: the UK and Regional Comparison 2014-2019

FINANCING AND INVESTMENTS

Chart 19 Key Financial and Investment Indicators Chart 20 Ease of Doing Business Ranking: Getting Credit Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2015-2020 Chart 21 Soundness of Credit Information: Credit Bureau Coverage 2020 Chart 22 Global Competitiveness Ranking: Financial Systems Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2014-2019 Chart 23 Ease of Doing Business Ranking: Protecting Minority Investors Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2015-2020 Chart 24 Index of Economic Freedom: Property Rights Pillar Rank in the UK and Regional Comparison 2015-2020 Chart 25 Number of Companies Admitted to Listing on the Exchange and Market Capitalisation Dynamics 2015-2019 Chart 26 Stock Market Index in the UK and Selected Regional Countries 2015-2020 Chart 27 Stocks Traded as % of GDP in the UK and Selected Regional Economies 2014-2019 Chart 28 Bank Claims on the Private Sector as % of GDP 2015-2020

SKILLS AND LABOUR

Chart 29 Key Skills and Labour Indicators Chart 30 Global Competitiveness Ranking: Skills Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2014-2019 Chart 31 Population Aged 15+ with Higher Education 2015-2020 Chart 32 Education Indicators 2020 Chart 33 Number of University Graduates by Programme 2020 Chart 34 Global Competitiveness Ranking: Labour Market Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2014-2019 Chart 35 Employment by Age 2020 Chart 36 Employment by Gender 2020 Chart 37 Labour Structure Change over 2015-2020 Chart 38 Labour Structure Comparison 2020 Chart 39 Self Employed as % of Total Employed Population 2020 Chart 40 Index of Economic Freedom: Labour Pillar Rank in the UK and Regional Comparison 2015-2020 Chart 41 Minimum Wage per Hour over 2015-2020 Chart 42 Wage per Hour in Manufacturing Sector over 2015-2020 Chart 43 Labour Market Regulations in the UK and Regional Comparison Chart 44 Employment by Industry Sector 2020

TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURE

Chart 45 Key Infrastructure Indicators Chart 46 Logistics Performance Index Scores by Pillar in the UK and Regional Comparison 2020 Chart 47 Logistics Performance Index Ranking for the UK and Regional Comparison 2015-2020 Chart 48 Global Competitiveness Ranking: Product Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2014-2019 Chart 49 Global Competitiveness Ranking: Infrastructure Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2014-2019 Chart 50 Transportation Mode Indicators in the UK and Regional Comparison Chart 51 Road Infrastructure 2020 Chart 52 Ease of Doing Business Ranking: Trading Across Borders Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2015-2020 Chart 53 Transaction Time for Trading Across Borders 2020 Chart 54 Costs of Trade Transactions Across Borders 2020 Chart 55 Global Competitiveness Ranking: Market Size Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2014-2019

DIGITALISATION AND INNOVATION

Chart 56 Innovation and Digitalisation Key Indicators Chart 57 Network Readiness Ranking by Pillar in the UK and Regional Comparison 2020 Chart 58 Network Readiness Ranking for the UK and Regional Comparison 2019-2020 Chart 59 Network Readiness Ranking: Technology Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2019-2020 Chart 60 Global Competitiveness Ranking: ICT Adoption Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2014-2019 Chart 61 Business Digitalisation in the UK 2020 Chart 62 Global Competitiveness Index: Innovation Pillar for the UK and Regional Comparison 2014-2019 Chart 63 Intellectual Property: the UK Compared to Selected Regional Peers

APPENDIX A

APPENDIX B

APPENDIX C

APPENDIX D

APPENDIX E

The Network Readiness Index (NRI) 2020
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