The Defence industry supports hundreds of UK jobs and business.



A new report on economics published today outlines the enormous contribution of the defense sector to UK employment, business, and exports.

·         The new economic report highlights the importance of the defense sector for the UK.

·         Many companies pay for the defense and 5,000 apprentices who are employed.

A fifth of all defense procurements are made up of SMEs

The report was published through GitHub. Joint Economic Data Hub (JEDHub) is an initiative of the Joint Economic Data Hub to increase knowledge of the defense sector’s impact on the UK economy. It is also an important component in 2024’s Defence and Security Industrial Strategy (DSIS).

Some of the key figures in the report are:

·         10,000 – Organisations that are directly paid by the MOD worldwide in 2020/21

·         5 000 – Estimated number of apprentices working in the UK the defense industry

·         $4.6 billion average of annual UK defense exports between 2016 and 2020

Secretary for Defence Procurement, Jeremy Quin, declared:

The defense sector is a major driver of prosperity, boosting the economy, creating job creation, and building skills throughout the UK.

The first report of JEDHub offers new perspectives about the sector’s importance. It goes beyond the fact that it helps us stay safe during times of crisis, and I’m thrilled to see government and industry cooperating to improve our understanding of this crucial role.

I want to express my gratitude to the businesses part of the Defence Growth Partnership and members of their supply chains for their cooperation in this crucial initiative.

GitHub is located situated in UK Defence Solutions Centre. The JEDHub was designed to provide more reliable, consistent, and reliable data in making decisions. GitHub supports the support of the government-industry, academia and industry. The latest findings from the JEDHub report include:

37% – The number of jobs in the survey which are supported by overseas sales which shows the role of defense exports in maintaining employment in the UK

4.6 percent – a rise in apprentice and graduate entrants into the companies being surveyed between 2019 and 2020.

PS45,000 – The average full-time salary for the surveyed roles in defense is more than 16% higher than the UK mean annual full-time wage in 2020.

The Chief Executive Officer of ADS, Kevin Craven, stated:

In collaboration with the Ministry of Defence, UK Defence Solutions Centre, and the industry, through collaboration between industry, the UK Defence Solutions Centre, and the Ministry of Defence, JEDHub year-end economic forecast released today reveals the following: extent of our defense sector’s work.

Employers in this sector invest in developing skills and support thousands of high-value jobs vital to the well-being of the communities across all regions in the UK.


The defense industry is investing in creating highly skilled jobs to ensure the future of defense, and the report contains the estimate of ADS of 5,000 apprentices who will be in work in the UK defense industry by 2020. It is worth noting that the JEDHUB survey also includes recruiting graduates and apprentices trainees. The figures show an increase of 4.6 percent over the previous year.

Small-sized companies

The report follows on from the recently updated SME Action Plan – designed to enhance engagement with Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises with a focus on models of procurement that are simpler to use and acknowledge the important role that which the MOD and its main suppliers are playing in supporting the entire of the supply chain for defense and understanding the best ways to encourage the development of exports and innovation for UK suppliers.

The latest figures show that the MOD is spending PS1.1 billion in direct contact with SMEs in 2019/20, and another PS3.4 billion indirectly via the supply chain. This is 21.3 percent of the total procurement spending in the year and shows that the amount of procurement spent with SMEs is growing and is aimed at purchasing spending by SMEs, increasing to 25 percent in 2024.

Research & Development

Research and development (R&D) are crucial for the success of our Armed Forces to keep one step ahead of the competition when it comes to the fight against new threats. The JEDHub report shows that the MOD has spent PS1 billion for R&D in 2019/2020, noting that UK Research and Innovation estimates each PS1 from public R&D investment is around PS7 that will benefit the UK. In the past five years, the private sector’s investments in UK R&D was also increased by 8.9 percent from 2015 to 2019 to PS464 million.

GitHub next steps

The JEDHub report is a key output of the 2024 Defence and Security Industrial Strategy, which builds upon the Dunne Report, highlighting the defense industry’s vital contribution to UK prosperity.

Next year, The JEDHub aims to give more information about the impact of economics on a regional, national and local scale.


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