Foreign investment to UK creates fewer jobs as Brexit looms – The Independent

Foreign investment to UK creates fewer jobs as Brexit looms – The Independent

The rate at which foreign investment into the UK is creating new jobs is slowing as Britain heads towards the exit door of the EU, Government figures show.

Statistics published by the Department for International Trade (DIT) today show new jobs created by foreign investment fell by 9 per cent last year, with the number of company expansions also falling.

Jobs created in 2015/16 were 82,650, calling to 75,226 in 2016/17, the Department said. Firms expanding were down from 821 to 782. 

The UK attracted over 2,200 new inward investment projects in 2016-17, a record rate.

Liam Fox, the International Trade Secretary, cast the figures in a positive light – noting that the UK was attracting “record levels of investment” despite the slowing job creation rate.

“Almost one year on since the EU referendum, the UK continues to attract record levels of inward investment and remains extremely attractive to foreign investors,” he said.

“As an international economic department, we continue to promote the strengths of the UK as a great inward investment destination, with an open, liberal economy, world-class talent and business-friendly taxation.”

The DIT says investments came first and foremost from the US, with 557 projects, and China in third with 160 projects. France was in third with 131 while India, Australia and New Zealand saw 127 projects each.

Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron said the fall in job creation showed Mr Fox’s department was a “disaster”.

“This report shows that Liam Fox’s department is a disaster.  If the International Trade Department cannot grow international trade, what are they actually for?” he said.

“While Liam Fox sits about in airport departure lounges of some of the world’s sunniest spots businesses back here in the UK are now seeing a Brexit squeeze which is impacting on our economy.

“This government have no plan, no idea and no clue and this report is the latest evidence.  Never has a minister risen so far and been more useless.”

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