Education continues to generates billions for UK economy

Figures show that education generates almost £20bn for the UK economy, cementing it as one of our most lucrative assets

New figures have revealed that the UK’s education sector is one of the most lucrative international assets, generating almost £20bn for the economy.

The figures are growing year-on-year; they have seen an increase of 26% since 2010, generating significant revenue for the UK alongside other well-known exports such as automobiles, advertising and insurance.

International exports adding a significant contribution to the economy include:

  • Higher education – £13.4bn

  • Transnational education (TNE) – £1.9bn

  • Education products and services – £1.9bn

  • English Language Training Courses – £1.6bn

  • Independent schools – £0.9bn

Education has long been one of the UK’s most attractive offers for export, with English being the language of business and a central global language. The most recent data shows the UK is the most popular destination for English Language Training, making up around 45% of the total market.

Damian Hinds said: “The UK has always provided world class education and these figures underline the importance of it to our economy – cementing our status as a global leader in this sector.

“International university students constitute an important earnings source for our universities but they are also an important part of Britain’s cultural influence in the world.

“As well as this, there are big growth opportunities in areas like education technology, services and satellite or partner campuses.

“Education is a fundamental part of our offer to the world, and we will work to maintain and grow this in the years to come.”

Minister for investment, Graham Stuart, added: “This is another record year for education exports. More and more students are coming to the UK to study and our immigration changes will make the UK even friendlier as a place to study and work.

“From education technology to British curricula and assessment we have what the world is looking for in education.

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“DIT is there to support British companies from giants to start ups – to gain market share, and help the world learn. We look forward to producing a refreshed International Education Strategy this year and working with the sector to grow even faster in global markets.”

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