The UK space industry continues to experience strong growth, according to a recent survey commissioned by the UK Space Agency
According to the report produced by London Economics, the UK space industry is now worth £13.7 billion to the UK economy and confidence amongst business is high.
The report, the ‘Size and Health of the UK Space Industry 2016’, represents the definitive latest source of information on the UK space sector.
It reveals that space continues to be a key infrastructure for the UK, supporting more than £250 billion of output across the economy.
The report also highlights that total direct employment in the UK space industry increased at a rate of 6% per annum to 38,522 jobs in 2014-15, which is 0.12% of UKs total workforce.
The workforce is exceptionally highly-skilled, with three-quarters of employees holding at least a primary degree – higher than any other sector covered by Office for National Statistics Census Data for England and Wales.
Economic uncertainty of Brexit one barrier to growth
As a commercially focused industry, with just 13.9% of its income coming from the public sector, the main source of income for the space sector is from sales to consumers at 54% and business at 32%.
When asked, 43% of respondents said that economic uncertainty is the most prevalent barrier to growth – with two-thirds of responses coming after the EU referendum.
However, there is encouraging optimism amongst many organisations, particularly with respect to near-term income growth. 70% of respondents believe income from the industry will grow over the next three years.
Firms are, on the whole, quite positive in their expectations for the future, with 6 in 10 respondents expecting job growth in the near future – especially the larger space organisations.