World news story

UK remains number one in Europe for investment

The UK retains pole position as the most attractive investment destination in Europe, for the eleventh year in a row.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

UK retains top spot for European FDI

The UK has received a major vote of confidence from foreign investors after retaining its lead as Europe’s top inward investment destination for the eleventh year running.

According to Ernst & Young’s annual European Attractiveness Survey, the UK has once again out-performed other European business destinations, attracting 18% of all FDI. The UK has a 10% lead over Germany and attracted almost 50% more investment than France.

UK Minister of State for Trade and Investment Lord Green said:

Although world markets have been affected by economic uncertainty, the ongoing strong flow of foreign direct investment continues to have a transformational impact on the UK, helping to create and sustain a globally attractive, highly competitive and truly international economy.

UK Trade & Investment’s Asia Pacific Investment Director Kirstyn Boyle said:

The UK government’s ongoing commitment to a flexible labour market and business deregulation has paid dividends. Corporate tax rates have been reduced and R&D tax incentives have increased. This year we introduce a new patent box, meaning innovators can benefit from a 10% tax.

The report showed that the UK attracted 30% of all European software projects - highlighting the success of the UK Prime Minister’s ‘TechCity’ initiative in East London and new technology acceleration projects rolling out across the UK. Innovative, fast growing digital and technology firms are flocking to London, taking advantage of attractive shared office spaces, incubation projects and support from industry leaders such as Google and Cisco.

Ms Boyle said:

Investors have been driving jobs growth in the UK and business confidence is high. While US and European investors are aware of the new dynamism in the UK, Asian investors are less well connected. Given inflationary labour rates across Asia Pacific, it is worth taking another look at the UK. Productivity is high and labour costs are now very competitive. A great deal of manufacturing and advanced engineering is being ‘re-shored’ to the UK as a result. Three major automotive investments are going ahead - Nissans fully-electric ‘Leaf’ is being produced in the North and both Vauxhall and Jaguar Land Rover are ramping up with new investments.

Further information

The full report can be found at

Published 6 June 2013