New data released this week by the Office for National Statistics showed that the Buckinghamshire economy was hit harder by the Covid-19 pandemic than the national (England) average, and in 2021, was experiencing a slower recovery.
In 2021, Buckinghamshire’s total GDP in current prices was £18,485m.
Buckinghamshire experienced a 12.2% decline in GDP in the year most affected by the Covid-19 pandemic (2020). This was greater than the national decline of 11.5%.
Buckinghamshire’s GDP rebounded by 7.8% between 2020 and 2021. This was lower than the national (England) average of 8.9%, and places Buckinghamshire in 32nd position of the 38 LEP areas.
At sector level, Buckinghamshire's production sector (agriculture, manufacturing, energy and utilities) performed better than the national average over the last two years. Across these sectors, output was higher in 2021 than in 2019.
Buckinghamshire's service sector (which is much larger than the production sector) fared less well, experiencing a harder hit and slower recovery than nationally.
Most of Buckinghamshire's industries had not returned to pre-Covid levels of output by 2021. Output remained considerably lower (in volume terms) in three industries: wholesale and retail; health and social care; and real estate, and considerably lower (in % terms) in the transport and storage industry.
Looking at the long-term trend, Buckinghamshire has experienced very slow growth in GDP over the last 20 years. In 2021, GDP in Buckinghamshire was 14% higher (in 2019 prices) than in 2001. This places Buckinghamshire in 36th position of 38 LEPs. Across England as a whole, GDP was 36% higher in 2021 than in 2001.
Full analysis will be presented within Buckinghamshire LEP's forthcoming Buckinghamshire Economy 2023 report.