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UK remains a top choice for foreign investors

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The United Kingdom remains an attractive prospect for foreigners looking to invest in technology businesses, according to a report from professional services company EY.

According to the firm, the UK ranked second in Europe for total inbound foreign direct investment (FDI) projects, behind France. This is the second time in the past two decades the UK missed out on Europe’s top spot for FDI, but this time around the gap to France has been narrowed.

In 2020, the UK secured 975 projects (down 12 percent), while France hosted 985 projects (down 18 percent). Germany ranked third, while Spain remained a “distant fourth”. 

The largest share of inbound FDI projects in the country are associated with digital technology, continuing a decade-long trend. London also kept its number one spot in the country, accounting for more than half (57.8 percent) of all digital tech FDI for the year.

It’s true that the number of projects declined in 2020, but there are signs that the sector is still attractive to investors, EY says. 

According to Praveen Shankar, EY UK&I Head of Technology, Media and Telecommunications, investors are prioritizing digital infrastructure, cybersecurity, entrepreneurship and protecting intellectual property and data. 

“High-quality digital infrastructure and innovation in the regions will accelerate opportunities to level up and grow the UK economy in years to come,” he added.