The UK is one of the world's great trading powers and financial centers, and its essentially capitalistic economy ranks among the four largest in Western Europe.
The UK has large coal, natural gas, and oil reserves , primary energy production account s , one of the highest shares of any industrial nation.
The Economy of England is the largest of the four economies of the United Kingdom.
England is the most highly industrialized country.
It is an important producer of textiles and chemical products.
Since the 1990s the financial services sector has played an increasingly greater role in the English economy and the City of London, which is the world's largest financial centre.
Agriculture is intensive, highly mechanized, and efficient by European standards, producing about 60% of food needs with only 1% of the labor force.
Around two thirds of production is devoted to livestock, one third to arable crops.
The main crops that are grown are wheat, barley, oats, potatoes, sugar beets, fruits and they use the euro vegetables, comparing to Romania which is a major producer of grain, sugar, meat and milk products.
Investing and banking
England's capital is London. The City of London is London's major financial district, and one of the world's leading financial centers.
The city is where the London Stock Exchange, as well as many other exchanges, are based.
Service industries, particularly banking, insurance, and business services, account by far for the largest proportion of GDP and employ around 70% of the working population.
The GDP of a country is defined as the total market value of all final goods and services produced within a country in a given period of time.
Manufacturing continues to decline in importance.
In the 1960s and 70s manufacturing was a significant part of England's economic output.
However, manufacturing still accounts for some 26% of the UK's GDP.
England remains a key player in the aerospace, defense, pharmaceutical and chemical industries.
Tourism is the 6th largest industry in the UK, contributing 76 billion pounds to the economy every year.
In 2005, in Romania, the hotel and restaurant industry added the value of just 15 billion pounds to the Romanian economy.
The largest centre for tourism is London, the capital of England, which attracts millions of international tourists every year.
England has many impressive sights to see: the Stonehenge Complex, the Canterbury Cathedral, St. Paul Cathedral, the British Museum, the National Gallery and the Madame Tousseau Museum.
The currency of England is the Pound Sterling, or British pound.
The central bank of the United Kingdom, where interest rates are set and monetary policy is carried out, is the Bank of England in London.
The strength of the English economy varies from region to region.
The following table shows the GDP in 2004 per capital.
Place GDP per capital in Euros
England 26 904
1. London 44 401
2. South East 31 300
3. East of England 27 778
4. South West 27 348
5. East Midlands 26 683
6. West Midlands 25 931
7. North West 25 396
8. Yorkshire and the Humber 25 300
North East 22 886
Romania 15 400
*Both were estimated in 2004.
The economy of Scotland is essentially a mixed economy.
Scotland has the second largest GDP per capital of any region in the United Kingdom after the South East of England, which includes London.
Scotland was one of the industrial powerhouses of Europe from the time of the Industrial Revolution.
Only about one quarter of the land is under cultivation - mainly in cereals.
Barley, wheat and potatoes are grown in eastern parts of Scotland.
The Tayside and Angus area is a centre of production of soft fruits such as strawberries and raspberries.
Sheep raising is important in the less arable mountainous regions.
Oil and gas
Scotland is the Europe's largest petroleum producer.
Oil was discovered in the North Sea in 1966, with the first year of full production taking place in 1976.
It is estimated that the industry employs around 100,000 workers (or 6% of the working population) of Scotland.
Whilst in recent years, North Sea oil production has been in decline.
It is estimated that there are reserves of two billion tones in the North Sea - as much as has been produced in the last 25 years.
Scotland is endowed with some of the best energy resources in Europe, and is a net exporter of electricity.
The main companies operating in the sector are Scottish Power, Scottish and Southern Energy and British Energy.
Currently renewable energy sources provide Scotland with 13% of its electricity production, with onshore wind generation making the largest contribution, and supporting several thousand jobs .
Manufacturing in Scotland has shifted its focus in recent years with heavy industries such as shipbuilding, iron and steel.
The decline in heavy industry in Scotland has been supplanted with the rise in the manufacture of lighter, less labor intensive products such as electronics and software.
Scotch Whisky is probably the best known of Scotland's manufactured exports contributing around £800 million to the Scottish economy, supporting 41,000 jobs as well as adding £2 billion to the balance of trade making it one of the UK’s top five manufacturing export earners.
Companies such as IBM have been in Scotland since the 1950's being joined in the 1980's by others. 45,000 people are employed by electronics and electronics-related firms, accounting for 12% of manufacturing output.
Knitwear and tweed are traditionally seen as cottage industries but names like Pringle have given Scottish knitwear and apparel a presence on the international market.
Furthermore the textiles industry is the 7th largest exporter in Scotland accounting for over 3% of all Scottish manufactured products.
In 2004, total Scottish exports (excluding intra-UK trade) was provisionally estimated to be £17.5 billion.
Top 10 export destinations, 2007
Export destination Value (£billion)
Republic of Ireland 1,700
Banking in Scotland has a long history, beginning with the creation of the Bank of Scotland, in Edinburgh, in 1695.
Today Scotland is home to 4 clearing banks - the Bank of Scotland, the Royal Bank of Scotland, the Clydesdale Bank and Lloyds TSB Scotland.
Tourism is one of Scotland's fastest growing economic sectors.
Visitors from the United States make up 24% of visits to Scotland, with the United States being the largest source of overseas visitors, and Germany, France, Canada and Australia following behind.
Scotland is a well-developed tourist destination with attractions ranging from unspoilt countryside, mountains and abundant history.
In 2004 the Welsh economy was the tenth largest of the UK's twelve 'regions' (counting Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland alongside the nine English Government Office Regions).
It is also considered as the 43rd largest economy in the world.
Wales has a diverse manufacturing sector. Heavy industry, once a mainstay of the Welsh economy has largely been in decline over the past century but is still very apparent.
Nearly all the tinplate and much of the aluminum of sheet steel products in the UK are produced in Welsh plants. Much of the ore is imported and some of the metal produced is re-exported.
Agriculture, forestry and fishing
Approximately 80% of the land in Wales is used for agriculture. With its grassy and hilly terrain, livestock farming is more common than crop cultivation.
Wales is famous for its sheep, of which there is a population of more than 10 million, outnumbering the human population of more than three to one.
Cattle farming for beef and dairy products is also common. About 13% of the land is covered by forestry and woodland. Wales's fishing industry is concentrated mainly along the Bristol Channel. In total, agriculture, forestry and fishing only contributes 1.5 % of the Welsh economy.
Over recent years, Cardiff, the northern and southern coastal belts, and some rural parts of Wales have experienced the biggest increase in employment, while the 'losers' have been the South Wales Valleys and other declining industrial towns.
In south west Wales and the Valleys, both employment and wages are generally lower, although earnings in Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot, which are still centres of skilled manufacturing employment, are relatively good.
In north and north west Wales earnings are low but the employment rates are above the Welsh average.
In 2003, Wales had 83 miles (133 kilometers) of motorways.
The M4 motorway, which terminates near Pontarddulais, serves major southern Welsh towns and cities.
There are only 2 railway lines with intercity express trains, following the north coast and south coast respectively. The Great Western Line serving south Wales crosses the Severn via the Severn Tunnel.
The economy of Northern Ireland is the smallest of the four Home Nations' economies of the United Kingdom.
To this day, Northern Ireland still suffers from the results of the Troubles which occurred between the late 1960s until the mid-1990s between Unionists and Nationalists.
Livestock is one of the major industries in Northern Ireland.
Agriculture in Northern Ireland is heavily mechanised, thanks to high labour costs and heavy capital investment, both from private investors and the European Union's Common Agricultural Policy.
In 2000, agriculture accounted for 2.4% of economic output in Northern Ireland, compared to 1% in the United Kingdom as a whole.
The main crops are (in descending order of value) potatoes, barley, and wheat.
Heavy industry is concentrated in and around Belfast, although other major towns and cities also have heavy manufacturing areas.
Machinery and equipment manufacturing, food processing, and textile and electronics manufacturing are the leading industries. Other industries such as papermaking, furniture manufacturing, aerospace and shipbuilding are also important, concentrated mostly in the eastern parts of Northern Ireland.
Of these different industries, one of the most notable is that of Northern Ireland's fine linens, which is considered as one of the most well-known around Europe.
Northern Ireland's total primary energy consumption is approximately 4.90 million tones of oil equivalent. The vast majority of this energy comes from fossil fuels.
Electricity consumption in Northern Ireland is 18% less than the rest of the United Kingdom.
Although this may be expected of a less prosperous region, Northern Ireland's relative energy efficiency is seen as a successful transitional from its once heavily industrialised economy to a less energy-reliant services-based one. The main power station is located at Ballylumford, and is operated by Premier Power.
Northern Ireland has well-developed transport infrastructure. Northern Ireland has a total of 24,820 km of roads, or 1 km for each 68 people, which is considerably more than in the United Kingdom as a whole (1 km per 162 people).
Northern Ireland is home to three civilian airports: Belfast City, Belfast International, and City of Derry.
The official currency in use in Northern Ireland is the British Pound sterling. The euro, in use in the Republic of Ireland, is accepted by retailing chains closer to the border with the Republic of Ireland, Sterling however remains Northern Ireland's legal tender and the most widely circulated currency.
In addition, four Northern Ireland banks retain the right to print their own sterling-denominated banknotes: Bank of Ireland, First Trust Bank, Northern Bank, and Ulster Bank.
Despite the negative image of Northern Ireland held in many foreign countries, on account of the Troubles, tourism is an important part of the Northern Irish economy.
In 2004, tourism revenue rose over 1% of the local economy, on the back of a rise of 4% in total visits in the year.
Tourism is considered likely to become one of the main growth areas of the economy in the near future, with the continuation of the peace process and the normalization of the image of Northern Ireland internationally.
The most popular tourist attractions include Belfast, Armagh, the Giant's Causeway, and Northern Ireland's many castles.