New research by industry body The City UK found that Wales exported £3.2bn of financial and professional services in 2020 – up 64% in the decade to 2020.
The report, ‘Exporting from across Britain: Financial and related professionals services 2022’, recorded that financial services exports from Wales accounted for 2.6% of Great Britain’s total financial services exports in 2020.
While related professional services exports from Wales accounted for 2% of Great Britain’s total related professional services exports.
Although London is one of the world’s leading international financial centres, the latest research shows that Wales makes an important contribution to exports of financial and related professional services.
Across the UK, all regions and nations generated trade surpluses in financial services in 2020. London had the largest financial services trade surplus of £34bn, followed by the south east of England at £5.1bn and Scotland at £4.6bn.
In terms of the destination of British financial services exports, 71% went to non-EU countries and the remaining 29% went to the EU in 2020.
Twenty-two percent of Welsh financial services exports went to the EU in 2020, and the remaining 78% went to the rest of the world.
For the UK, the US was by far the largest destination for financial services exports, accounting for 34% of total financial services exports in 2020. Other notable non-EU destinations for industry exports were Japan (3.5%) and Canada (3.4%).
The financial and professional services industry contributes 12% of the UK’s total economic output, employing over 2.2 million people, with two thirds of these jobs outside London.
It is one of the largest exporters and generates a trade surplus exceeding that of all other net exporting industries combined.
Chief economist and head of research at TheCityUK Anjalika Bardalai said: “As London is one of the world’s leading international financial centres, it inevitably leads the UK’s exports of financial and related professional services. But the idea that only London sells these services overseas and the rest of the UK focuses on domestic activity is misleading.
“Wales makes an important contribution to exports of financial and related professional services, demonstrating the vital economic role the industry plays across all parts of the country.
“In addition, as the UK braces for an economic storm, the surplus generated by financial and related professional services provides an important buffer against the risks of a widening trade deficit.”