Merchant login
agent login

Up to 149,000 British Jobs are Supported by Economic Ties with China

A recent study commissioned by the China-Britain Business Council concluded that well over 100,000 British jobs are supported by the growing economic relationship with China. 


  • Britain has an outstanding quality of higher education. The global reputation has undoubtedly attracted a number of international students. Did you know that 25% of all international students in the UK are Chinese? 
  • In the 2018/2019 academic year, 120,000 Chinese students enrolled into British higher education institutions. Considering that there were only 90,000 Chinese students enrolled in 2014/2015, this 30,000 increase will likely continue to rise. 
  • Additionally, Chinese students supported around 17,600 jobs in 2018/2019. This is a steady increase from 13,100 in 2014/2015. Of the 17,600: 60% are in retail, 20% in transport, and 5% in accommodation.
  • In fact, with rising tensions between the USA and China, it is sensible to assume that an influx of prospective Chinese international students will attend universities in Europe in the 2020/2021 academic year. Also, Chinese businesses might follow the trend of students choosing to study in Europe instead of America.


  • China is the UK’s third-largest export market for goods.
  • In 2019, the UK exported around £25.9 billion worth of goods to China. A 240% rise since 2010.
  • Crucially, these British exports to China generate business and economic growth across the length of Britain. Notably: 26% are from Scotland, 18% are from London and the South East and 16% are from the North of England. Hence economic ties between Britain and China benefits all different people in various areas.
  • Additionally, the fact that the City of London is the largest centre for Renminbi (or Yuan) trading outside of China, is a testament to the growing relationship between our two regions. 


  • Chinese tourists made a total of over 880,000 visits to Britain in 2019 and spent around £1.7 billion within the its borders.
  • Incredibly, between 2009 and 2019, Chinese tourists’ expenditure has increased by over 500%. 
  • In 2019, the average Chinese tourist stayed in the UK for 9 days. Importantly, this is 4 days higher than tourists from other countries. These added days account for high spending. It gives an added boost to the UK’s retail and hospitality sector. For example, hotels and restaurants benefit from international customers seeking local delicacies.  

Ultimately, it is in Britain’s best interest to increase business with a market of 1.4 billion consumers. Furthermore, the Covid-19 pandemic is a testing time for the global community. Therefore, as we rebuild our economies and build trust in public consumers, it is important to reaffirm the value of cross-border business and relationships. 

Source: China-Britain Business Council 

Interested in connecting with tech-savvy Chinese consumers?

GlobePay is a cross-border payment service provider. At GlobePay, we enable you to accept digital payments from Chinese e-wallets on multiple devices (mobile and desktop etc). These hugely popular e-wallets are: Alipay, WeChat Pay and Union Pay. We can also help you attract Chinese customers through marketing services that target users of Alipay and WeChat Pay.

Merchant Login
Agent Login