City’s potential £12bn boost will rely on oversea’s ‘exceptional talent’
London’s digital technology sector is poised to grow by 5.1% a year for the next ten years, as per a forecast by Oxford Economics.
The forecast commissioned predicts an additional £12bn ($20bn) of economic activity and 46,000 new jobs by 2024.
The growth in the report refers to Gross Value Added (GVA) and an average annual growth rate.
A separate report by an American Think Tank South Mountain Economics said that employment in the broader tech/info sector in London has witnessed a surge of 11% since 2009, employing 382,000 workers in 2013.
It also says that London has emerged as the world leader in financial technology, employing more workers than New York City and San Francisco-Silicon Valley. Tech and information businesses in London, southeast and east England, including Oxford and Cambridge, are growing faster than in California.
But the report points out that growth will not be accompanied by availability of additional job opportunities to Londoners but proposed changes to immigration law, which will enable technology firms to bring in migrants on "exceptional talent" visas.
London & Partners which commissioned the report didn’t clarify whether the forecast was conditional to changes in immigration law as the extra 46,000 jobs would be nearly 30% more than the 155,600 currently employed.
The reports were released ahead of London Technology Week, which will see participation of more than 30,000 global tech entrepreneurs, investors, business leaders and developers across more than 200 events.