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Regional cities hold UK back

Words: Huw Morris

Most UK cities are lagging behind their European counterparts on innovation, productivity and skills, according to a think tank.

Nine out of 10 UK cities are outperformed on productivity by those on the Continent, with a quarter among the least productive in Europe.

The Centre for Cities revealed that more than three out of four UK cities have a lower proportion of high-skilled residents than the European average.

Only two UK cities – Cambridge and Oxford – are in the European top 20 for innovation, while four out of five fall below the continental average.

The think tank said the UK economy relies on a “handful of high-performing cities for growth”.

London, the biggest economy in Europe, accounts for a quarter of the UK’s output. This is more than Paris’s 20 per cent contribution to France’s economy and significantly bigger than Berlin’s role in the German economy at 4 per cent.

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