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Redbridge workers contribute more to economy than national average but fall behind some other London boroughs

PUBLISHED: 07:18 18 March 2020 | UPDATED: 07:18 18 March 2020

New figures from the ONS show Redbridge workers contribute £38.81 per hour worked to the economy. Picture: Ken Mears

New figures from the ONS show Redbridge workers contribute £38.81 per hour worked to the economy. Picture: Ken Mears

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Redbridge’s workers make £38.81 an hour for the UK’s economy, figures published for the first time reveal.

It means the area’s workforce is slightly more productive than the average across the country – though it still lags a long way behind some other boroughs in the capital.

A leading policy thinktank said the “productivity output gap” is one of the biggest challenges facing the British economy.

New figures from the Office for National Statistics show Redbridge has a gross value added of £38.81 per hour worked.

It was an increase of 2pc on 2017 and the area is above the UK average of £35.03 per hour.

GVA is the final value of the goods and services produced in an area and is used to measure contribution to the national economy.

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London as a whole has an average GVA of £46.30, making it the most productive region in Britain.

The leader of Redbridge Council, Cllr Jas Athwal, said: “We’re proud that Redbridge workers are so successful and contribute so much to the economy. As a diverse borough, we have the variety of skills and experience necessary to support London’s economic strength.

“The borough is growing and we are maximising opportunities to boost our economy.

“We’re harnessing the benefits of Crossrail and providing the social and community infrastructure that businesses need, including affordable workspace, and access to a skilled workforce.”

Paul Swinney, director of policy and research at urban policy research unit Centre for Cities, said: “The productivity output gap between northern and southern cities is one of the biggest challenges facing the British economy.

“While cities and large towns in south-eastern England are among the most productive places in Europe, those in the north lag far behind and, as a result, it takes someone in Wigan a full working week to produce what it takes someone in Westminster just two and a half days.

“Addressing this disparity should be central to the government’s levelling up agenda. Transport investment within big cities will be important, and so will spending on adult education to upskill the workforce.”

The ONS says that areas with high labour productivity will usually be home to a major manufacturing site or a large utility sector, and those with low productivity are typically more rural or isolated places.

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