Black Country business boom

Region achieves second highest national growth rate.

New official figures confirm that the Black Country heads the table for growth in the Midlands and is the second highest performer amongst national Local Enterprise Partnership areas for economic growth in 2013.

The data from the Office for National Statistics reveals that for the Black Country LEP area as a whole, the economy grew by 4.5% in 2013, well above the national average of 3.3%.

Black Country LEP Chair, Stewart Towe said: “These figures showing the Black Country is the second highest performing out of the 39 LEP areas for economic growth are evidence of the continuing strong transformation of our local economy. The Black Country LEP and its partners will continue to boost business growth and build on our unique position as the UK’s manufacturing heart to ensure high quality products are made in the Black Country and sold around the world.”

The figures show that economic output for the Black Country LEP area in 2013 was £19.5bn. Over the period 2008-13 from the start of the economic downturn, the Black Country was ranked 14th out of the 39 LEP areas with 2.4% growth.

Gross Value Added (GVA) the official measure of economic output, per head currently stands at £16,958 in the Black Country which is £7,133 behind the national average. However, the Black Country was ranked 9th of 39 LEPs in terms of the increase in GVA per head in the period 2008-2013.

A detailed analysis of the Black Country’s economic performance will be given at the Black Country Consortium’s 2015 Symposium on Thursday 19th March at Dudley Evolve.