Portsmouth: City forecasted to be second fastest growing in UK

Portsmouth is forecast to be the second-fastest growing city in terms of GVA by the end of 2020, according to a report published by the UK Powerhouse study.

The report says Portsmouth’s economy is on course to grow by 1.6% this year – compared with an average of 0.9% in the 46 towns and cities covered.

It also notes how a recent report found that the port, which handles around £700 million of non-EU trade each year and supports 2,410 jobs in the local area through direct employment and supply chain impacts, is worth £390m to the national economy.

Portsmouth City Council recently worked with many other partners in the city to formulate a new Economic Development and Regeneration Strategy, which was adopted in October 2019. They are keen to encourage investment and support businesses in the city to continue to grow.

Steve Pitt, Portsmouth City Council’s cabinet member for culture and city development, said: “I am delighted that the UK Powerhouse study has forecast that Portsmouth will be the second-fastest growing city in the country by end of 2020.

“Our aim is to make Portsmouth Britain’s premier waterfront technology and innovation city – a great place to invest, learn, live, work and visit, and the most attractive place for starting, growing or locating a business.

“Economic growth is a way of ensuring that all of our residents have the opportunity for a decent quality of life for themselves and for their children and their children’s children.”

Mike Sellers, Portsmouth International Port director, said: “This latest report validates the investment and vision we, and our customers, have for the future of the port. We have a determined strategy to build on these figures, which have grown since our economic report was commissioned.

“As a local authority owned port we play a vital role in employment for the area and also provide a critical contribution to the council’s budget, however the importance of the port goes beyond the PO post code. We have an impact nationally and are a crucial trade link for both EU and international goods.

“From both our ferry operations, handling essential just-in-time goods, and reaching the most routes in Europe, our aim to triple cruise passengers, to our support for global trade through Portsmouth’s international cargo operator Portico, highlights our serious contribution as a major UK port.

“We have bold investment plans underway to now transform the port so we’re in the best position to handle more passengers and freight, while remaining as environmentally conscious as possible. We believe our sustainable and strategic ambitions go hand-in-hand. We will continue to develop as major port, with a determined focus to become one of the UK’s first zero emissions port.”

The figures come from the UK Powerhouse study, compiled for law firm Irwin Mitchell by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr).