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UK miners halved investment in the EU after referendum but saw earnings rocket

Published by , Editorial Assistant
Global Mining Review,

The UK mining sector has halved its overall investment positions in the EU since the Brexit vote, but earnings have rocketed by more than £2 billion in that time, analysis of the latest ONS data by R&D tax relief specialist Catax has revealed.

UK mining and quarrying companies had £34.4 billion invested in the EU in 2015, the year before the Brexit referendum, but this had dropped to £16 billion in 2018 – a 53.5% fall. However, in the same period, earnings from UK investments in the EU shot up from negative £91 million in 2015 to positive £2.1 billion in 2018.

The data suggests UK miners have made a series of wise investment moves in the wake of the referendum. Meanwhile, EU inward investment positions for the UK mining sector decreased from £52.5 billion in 2015 to £35.2 billion in 2018 – a reduction of 33%. This compares favourably with sectors such as UK utilities, which has quadrupled its investment position in the EU but seen earnings increase only a quarter (23%).

Mark Tighe, chief executive of R&D tax relief specialists Catax, said: “For the past few years we have heard horror stories about what would happen to the UK following the vote to leave the EU.

“The mining industry has clearly made some hard decisions about the future, with investment positions being wound down on both sides of the Channel. But for UK firms these sensible decisions have clearly paid off, with mining and quarrying firms enjoying a boom in earnings, emerging this side of Brexit in stronger position.

“The mining sector’s earnings have gone from being £91 million in the red, to a whopping £2 billion in the black since the Brexit vote. This is more good news for British industry as the country starts to set its own course on the journey to become a new outward-looking nation outside the EU.”

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