Modern industrialisation started in England and UK industry now is so varied that it would be difficult to provide an overview in a short article. Instead, we’d look at the major sources of industry information and other shortcuts.
The Department of Trade & Industry Web site has links to different aspects and industries in UK. You could select the topic that interests you from the dropdown lists and get detailed information.
The following, taken from DTI industries dropdown list, should give you an idea of the variety of business opportunities available:
- Business Services
- Computer Games
- Computer Services
- Digital Content
- Food & Drink
- Information Security
- Oil & Gas Packaging
- Property Services
- Publishing Retailing
- R&D Security
- Software Services
Agro-food industries include arable cropping, horticulture, livestock husbandry, food processing and post-harvest technology. Environment, fisheries and rural development are also handled by the concerned government department.
UK has a very advanced Agriculture & Food industry. Support industries have also adopted advanced technology and practices. The government provides different kinds of assistance to entrepreneurs in the industry, including export assistance. Details are available at Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) Web site.
Along with other highly industrialised countries, UK manufacturing too has suffered owing to competition from lower cost developing countries that are adopting sophisticated technology. To meet this competition, the government is trying to encourage highly skilled, knowledge intensive, highly productive and innovative manufacturing businesses.
The recommended strategy for manufacturing businesses include:
- Investing in efficient processes and equipment
- Developing innovative, high-value new products
- Adopting best practices, including continuous improvement
- Enhancing the skill levels of workforce
The services sector is more profitable than the manufacturing sector in UK now. There are a number of important sub sectors under this sector. We look at some of these below.
London in UK has become a centre of excellence for marketing communications – advertising, public relations, direct marketing, market research, exhibitions, conferences and sales promotion. These services have a market in excess of 30 billion sterling. Management consultancy services accounted for an additional 20 billion.
Computer services include developing software solutions, installation of system software and developing generic & tailor made software. UK companies and government are more willing to spend on IT than most countries. 95000 companies employing over a million persons operate in this sector.
Education & Training
In addition to a strong domestic market, UK education services also have an increasing export market. Universities are also prominent in Research & Development. UK spends heavily on R&D and many research teams have international partnerships.
The National Health Service of Britain is considered a benchmark for excellence worldwide. It is a huge organization employing 1.5 million persons. NHS is a major buyer of healthcare products.
London is a top financial centre in the world. It has the largest share in Metals Market, Eurobond Trade, Foreign Equity Market, Derivative Market, Tanker Charter Business and Insurance. The industry employs over a million persons and has an export turnover in excess of Pounds Sterling 30 billion. UK also has the highest concentration of foreign banks.