Throughout 2015, for the second year in a row, inward investment into the West Midlands stayed consistently sharp.
Last year, the region had 92 foreign direct investment (FDI) projects, which is up by 46% on 2014’s amount of 63.
The projects counted are ones by businesses that are newly investing in the region, as well as projects by businesses already existing there.
It seems the manufacturing sector is one of the stronger influences, with eight of the Midlands projects, which were reported to create over 300 jobs, having investments by firms such as Jaguar Land Rover.
Analysis by EY’s annual UK Attractiveness Survey cements this further, as it found that FDI projects created 7,134 jobs, with over three-quarters coming from the manufacturing sector.
Senior Partner at EY in the Midlands, Sara Fowler, commented saying it was “another exceptional year for the West Midlands” in 2015.
However, of the twelve UK regions, three saw a decline in project numbers secured in 2015, with the South East being down 22%, Northern Ireland decreased 62% while Wales fell by 2%.
Ms Fowler continued: “2015 was indeed the year of the UK’s regions and cities. The geographic mix of inward investment last year strongly suggests that the UK is using FDI very effectively to help rebalance its economy, with almost 90% of the UK’s total FDI growth coming from the regions outside of London and the South East.
“Investors are voicing solid support for the UK’s agenda to devolve power to a regional level, it now seems devolution is starting to work and foreign investors are helping rebalance economic activity more evenly across the country.”