Fashion worth more than $30 billion to UK economy

Thu Sep 16, 2010 1:34pm EDT
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By Paul Casciato

LONDON (Reuters Life!) - The direct value of the fashion industry to the British economy is nearly 21 billion pounds ($32.75 billion) according to a study released on the eve of London Fashion Week.

The "Value of the UK Fashion Industry" report, commissioned by the British Fashion Council (BFC), defines the industry and analyses the economic value of Britain's fashion industry for the first time, the BFC said in a statement with the report's release.

It said that fashion's wider contribution to the economy in influencing spending in other industries, ranging from IT to tourism, was calculated as more than 16 billion pounds.

"This means that, including direct, indirect, induced and 'spill over' effects, the fashion industry's total contribution to the UK economy is estimated to stand at more than 37 billion pounds," the report said.

Fashion's direct economic contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was collated by analyzing the industry's profits and wages across a wide range of fashion products and items -- including womenswear and menswear through to handbags and shoes -- plus the contribution of fashion education, fashion marketing and fashion media.

The report also highlighted the pivotal role of cutting edge British design, and showcase events such as London Fashion Week -- which runs from Sept 17-21, in driving innovation and growth within the industry itself, as well as attracting millions of visitors from across the globe every year.

"British Fashion has the talent, creativity and skills to rival anywhere in the world," Minister for the Creative Industries Ed Vaizey said in the statement. "Our new and established designers and fashion labels are internationally renowned for their unique vision at the cutting edge of this hugely important global industry."

EVOLVING   Continued...

<p>Clothes hang on a rail at a Primark store in Loughborough, central England, November 4, 2008. REUTERS/Darren Staples</p>