RIA: UK rail can be “economic powerhouse”

The rail industry generated some £43 billion worth of Gross Value Added (GVA) to the economy and supported 710,000 jobs in the UK in 2019.

That’s according to a new economic report commissioned by the Railway Industry Association and published by independent researcher Oxford Economics.

As 2019 is the latest year for which detailed data is available, the report does not attempt to quantify the downturn caused by the subsequent emergence of COVID-19. But it does clearly show that the sector was enjoying strong growth before the pandemic struck, with the 2019 figures representing a marked increase from the £36.4bn GVA and 600,000 jobs recorded in 2016.

Meanwhile, tax revenues increased from £11bn to £14bn over the same three-year period, and the £2.20 income generated elsewhere in the economy from every pound spent in rail had risen to £2.50.

On a regional level, the GVA generated by rail in 2019 varied from a high of £14bn in London to £1bn-£1.2bn in both Wales and the North East

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