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Research and development (R&D) expenditure

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  • Release date: 21 November 2018
  • Period covered: 2016 and 2017
  • Next update: March 2019
A report, produced by the Office for National Statistics, which show breakdowns of research and development spending and employment by UK business across different market sectors.

Updated for business enterprise expenditure, 2017

Release date: 22 November 2018

Key points

  • In 2017, business expenditure on R&D (BERD) for Wales was £457 million, up 4 per cent on the figure for 2016. This represented 2 per cent of the UK total.
  • The 4 per cent increase was the eighth largest increase of all 12 UK countries and English regions. For the UK, business expenditure on R&D increased by 5 per cent.
  • The level of BERD in Wales can be influenced greatly by individual projects commencing or ending in a small number of individual companies. The BERD series for Wales is therefore quite volatile and so a longer-term perspective is of interest.

Gross expenditure, 2016

Release date: 15 March 2018

Key points

  • An estimated total of £716 million was spent on R&D in 2016 in Wales, this is an increase of £49 million compared to 2015.
  • R&D expenditure represented 2.2 per cent of total UK R&D expenditure and 1.2 per cent of total Gross Value Added in Wales.
  • Business enterprise R&D accounted for 61 per cent of the total in Wales, with higher education accounting for 37 per cent, government making up 2 per cent and Private Non Profit making up less than 1 per cent.
  • In a small region such as Wales, the level of R&D expenditure can be influenced greatly by a small number of major projects commencing or ending, meaning the time series can be volatile.


As agreed with the Office for Statistics Regulation, these statistics will be updated at 12.30pm. StatsWales tables will follow within 48 hours.


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