Britain’s economy would be more than £200bn bigger if all cities were as productive as those in London and the south-east, reports The Guardian.
A report by the Centre for Cities revealed that the capital and its satellite cities were as productive as anywhere in Europe and that the UK’s recent weak productivity record was the result of a huge performance gap with other parts of the country.
The thinktank said that in places such as London, Slough, Reading, Milton Keynes and Aldershot, the value of output per worker was 44 per cent higher than in other parts of Britain and 7 per cent higher than in Europe’s economic powerhouse, Germany.
It added that in 2015 only eight of 62 UK cities recorded productivity above the national average – with Bristol, Edinburgh, Swindon and Aberdeen the only ones outside the greater south-east.
Cities such as Stoke, Blackburn, Mansfield and Doncaster had productivity 25 per cent below the national average, the Centre for Cities said. Raising all parts of the UK to the national productivity average would increase the size of the economy by £203bn – equivalent to Birmingham’s output four times over.