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The economic development of the UK

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The UK has a partially regulated market economy. Based on market exchange rates the UK is today the sixth-largest economy in the world and the third-largest in Europe after Germany and France, having fallen behind France for the first time in over a

decade in 2008.The Bank of England is the UK's central bank and is responsible for issuing the nation's currency, the pound sterling. Pound sterling is the world's third-largest reserve currency (after the U.S. Dollar and the Euro).

The UK is the world’s ninth largest oil producer and the fifth largest gas producer. Developing North Sea oil and gas has created a huge support industry offering equipment and services to oil and gas company at home and abroad. British Petroleum (BP) is the eleventh largest industrial grouping in the world and the second largest in Europe.

The UK service sector makes up around 73% of GDP. London is one of the three "command centres" of the global economy (alongside New York City and Tokyo), is the world's largest financial centre alongside New York.

The automotive industry is a significant part of the UK manufacturing sector and employs over 800,000 people, with a turnover of some £52 billion, generating £26.6 billion of exports. The aerospace industry of the UK is the second- or third-largest national aerospace industry

depending upon the method of measurement and has an annual turnover of around £20 billion. British aviation equipment companies have made significant technological advances. They supply navigation and landing systems, engine and flight controls, power systems, flight deck control and information systems. British firms have also been active in developing flight simulators, and “fly-by-wire” technology, in which the aircraft’s control surfaces are manipulated electronically.

The most rapid growth in recent years has been in pharmaceuticals, pesticides and cosmetics. ICI is the fourth largest chemical company in the world and one of the largest exporting companies. Britain is active in biotechnology research and has made major advances in the development of drugs such as human insulin and genetically-engineered vaccines.

Although Britain is a densely populated, industrialized country, agriculture is still one of its most important industries. Dairying is most common in the west of England, where the wetter climate encourages the growth of good grass.

The south-eastern coast is well-known for its picturesque scenery and mild climate and a number of popular resorts. On the southern coast of England there are many large ports, among them: Southampton, Portsmouth, Plymouth.


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