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UK has top internet economy in G20: BCG

The sector has overtaken manufacturing and retail.


LONDON, UK — The UK has retained its position as the largest internet economy in the G-20, according to research by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG).

The internet is now the UK’s second-biggest economic contributor behind the property sector, having overtaken manufacturing and retail.

BCG expects the internet economy to contribute $332.6 billion to the overall economy in 2015, up from $221 billion in 2010. At 10% of gross domestic product (GDP), this is a larger percentage than in any other G-20 country.

By 2016, the Internet economy will be contributing 12.4% of GDP in the UK, compared with a G-20 average of 5.3%.

“Among G-20 countries, the UK’s digital economy is the largest as a proportion of GDP, and we expect the UK to retain its position,” said Paul Zwillenberg, a BCG partner and digital economy expert.

“The Internet economy in the UK, which includes online retailing, sales of Internet-related devices, IT and telecommunications investments, and Internet-related government spending, is expected to grow to more than $369.5 billion over the life of the next government and to double in size from 2010.”

But he said other G-20 members with rapidly growing online-retail sectors, such as China and South Korea, are closing the gap.

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