With a population of 66.03 million in 2017 that is expected to grow to 66.93 million in 2019, a GDP of US$2.6 trillion in 2017, which is expected to increase to about US$2.7 trillion in 2019 and a GDP per capita income of US$38,847 in 2017, projected to increase to US$40,800 in 2019, the UK is the fifth largest economy in the world, offering substantial market opportunities for African products and services.
The country’s economy is primarily driven by the services sector, which contributes more than 75% of GDP. Agriculture contributes approximately 1% of GDP, making manufacturing the second most significant contributor to GDP.
The UK is currently negotiating to leave the EU (Brexit), after which it would have to negotiate new trade agreements with several countries. Despite the uncertainty surrounding the post-Brexit period, there is potential for UK and African companies to take advantage of market and investment opportunities in each other’s market after Brexit.UK post-Brexit.
Looking ahead, the UK introduced a Taxation Bill (Cross-Border Trade Bill to enable the UK to put in place a trade and preference scheme for developing countries as it leaves the EU), which l will, among other things, provide the same level of market access to developing country products as the current EU trade preference scheme, maintaining duty-free, quota-free access for LDCs and offering generous tariff reductions to 25 other developing countries.
The UK has also introduced a Trade Bill that would allow it to replicate the EU-ACP Partnership Arrangements and minimise the disruption of existing trade arrangements.
It is also aiming at boosting outward direct investment into Africa and encourage UK investors to take advantage of investment opportunities on the growing African market.