The second Joint Economic Data Hub report outlines the value of the defence sector to UK jobs, businesses and exports
- Defence sector continues to show growth in employment across the UK, delivering on the Prime Minister’s priority to grow the UK economy.
- Defence activity showed resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic, with defence turnover growing by 2.1% in the surveyed companies.
- Approximately 130,000 indirect jobs supported by the Defence Growth Partnership companies in the UK supply chain in 2021, with many in highly-skilled roles.
- High wages with 8.2% wage growth since 2020 in the surveyed companies.
Delivering on one of the Prime Minister’s key priorities, the Defence industry has been recognised as a key contributor to the UK economy, with jobs, businesses and exports being boosted, a new report has detailed today.
Building on the inaugural Joint Economic Data Hub (JEDHub) report published last year, this year’s report highlights several insights, including the important contribution international business makes supporting UK defence turnover, with around 40% of defence turnover in surveyed companies coming from international sources in 2021.
Continuing to show significant growth in employment, the report also highlights that, despite wider manufacturing contractions, there has been a 3.5% growth in surveyed defence full-time employees from 2020, also showing how the sector is driving demand for high productivity, highly skilled and high wage jobs across the UK.
The report found that 130,000 indirect jobs were supported in the UK supply chain by the 11 Defence Growth Partnership (DGP) companies in 2021, with a quarter of new recruits made up of apprentices and graduates in 2021.
Additionally, of the companies surveyed, 45% of the roles were in STEM-related employment and over 25% of activity was in Research and Development, contributing to future skills, technologies and defence capabilities.
Minister for Defence Procurement, James Cartlidge said:
This second JEDHub report provides new insights into how the defence sector continues to contribute to the economic wellbeing of communities right across the UK, including through high-paying jobs.
I am delighted that industry and government are continuing to work together in helping us grow our understanding of that vital contribution.
The report recognised high average wages in the sector, with an 8.2% growth on 2020; and provides greater insights on skills, apprenticeships and graduates, the defence supply-chain and defence capabilities.
The report also shows a significant level of activity across each of the lifecycle activities, contributing to a diverse skill-set, with the growth in R&D activity contributing to future skills, technologies and defence capabilities. 7.9% of surveyed defence employment is made up of trainees on apprenticeship and graduate trainee programmes, with growing investment in trainee programmes in the defence sector ensuring future skills availability.
This report draws on the results of a JEDHub industry survey as well as data from other sources, including the Office for National Statistics. Based at the UK Defence Solutions Centre (UKDSC), the JEDHub is a collaborative initiative, supported by government, industry and academia to improve understanding of the defence sector’s contribution to the UK economy, and was an important deliverable of the 2021 Defence and Security Industrial Strategy (DSIS).
Chief Executive of ADS, Kevin Craven, said:
The second JEDHub report highlights how the strong and agile UK defence sector continues to grow as global threats and volatility increase in a challenging geopolitical environment.
The ability to use impartial and objective statistics and data to identify the strengths of the UK defence sector are essential for its future success.
The JEDHub project is another example of successful Government and industry collaboration which is essential to strengthen UK capability. We look forward to timely projects including on international alliances and programmes such as AUKUS and GCAP which exemplify the UK’s enduring commitment to supporting global defence and security.
The latest JEDHub Annual Economic Report builds on the success of last year’s report and an all-new industry survey, providing a detailed picture of the UK defence sector in 2021.
This year’s report captures economic data in 2020 and 2021, which includes the period during the COVID-19 pandemic which will have uniquely impacted key metrics such as recruitment and turnover.