North of England

Find out about the North of England’s diverse regional economy, worth more than £340 billion and greater than that of Austria and Norway.

The North of England is recognised as a global centre for creativity and design and attracts thriving international investment. This heritage of expertise and manufacturing know-how is well established on the world stage, and historically gave birth to the Industrial Revolution.

Expanding your business

The North is a global hub, with 7 international gateway airports, flying direct to 254 destinations. There are also 12 major foreign trading ports here. A high quality of life attracts people to live, work, study and invest in a region blessed with beautiful national parks and a renowned heritage of football, music and culture.

Get practical guidance and insights to help you successfully set up in the UK.

Investing capital

The North has 21 large and exciting capital projects with a combined worth of £10.6 billion, seeking investment across the public and private sectors. Investors can choose from projects across asset classes, with promoters offering flexibility in deal structures and partners.

Buying goods and services

The 12 major foreign trading ports connect Atlantic shipping in Liverpool, while areas such as the Tyne, Teesside and Hull provide links to the European continent. The North is home to over 1 million businesses with an abundance of opportunities in sectors such as clean growth, tech, digital, manufacturing, life sciences, financial and professional services.

universities ranked in the world's top 100
foreign-owned businesses in 2019
of the UK's 10 largest cities (Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle and Sheffield)
new freeports in Liverpool, Tees Valley and the Humber
new homes needed each year to 2035
£50.5 billion
of goods exported in 2020
of the UK economy
of university students are from overseas (2019/20)
15.5 million

Strategic markets


The region attracts a range of sectors due to its world-leading design, manufacturing heritage, abundance of R&D and a growing population of skilled labour delivering globally innovative products. These are some of the many reasons why the region is so attractive to many sectors.

Science and manufacturing

A pioneering engineering base supports major aerospace and automotive companies. As a health and life sciences hub, the region conducts 30% of the UK’s clinical studies.


You’ll get a higher yield rate on property investment here than in London. Established Grade A office markets are located across the key Northern cities. The demand and price for residential properties are both set to rise.

Finance and business

The North of England has one of the largest concentrations of financial and business services in Europe. The region employs 11 times more people than Frankfurt.

Case studies


Hornsea One

In 2020 the North of England became home to the world’s largest offshore wind farm, Hornsea One, off the Humber coast. It generates more electricity from renewables than anywhere else in the UK. The North holds 40% of the UK’s offshore wind farms and further construction is attracting investments worth between £75 billion and £100 billion.

Northern Gritstone

Northern Gritstone (NG) is an investment company partnered with the universities of Leeds, Manchester and Sheffield. NG supports the government’s ambition to level up the economy by investing in IP-rich businesses based in the North of England. NG leverages competitive advantage from propriety access to spin-outs from leading northern universities. NG’s pipeline is over 120 companies with a combined funding requirement of over £200 million.


Important notice regarding Midia Investors Ltd

The Department for International Trade (DIT) was briefly engaged with a company called Midia Investors Ltd with regards to the Powerhouse Hotels programme. DIT confirmed with Midia Investors Ltd that their submission to the Powerhouse Hotels programme was no longer approved through DIT’s review processes and DIT would not promote it to investors. Despite this however, Midia Investors Ltd continue to describe their projects on their website as having “secured full Government and Department of International Trade approval.” DIT can confirm that this is not the case and any individual or company engaging with Midia Investors Ltd should be aware of this.

If you have engaged with Midia Investors Ltd or any further questions regarding this issue, please contact