UK boating industry buoyed by weak pound


Sunseeker 76Image copyright
MiKe Jones

The UK’s boat and yacht industry has seen revenues surge to their highest level since the financial crisis after the weaker pound helped drive up sales.

Sales rose by 3.4% to £3.1bn in the year to April 2017, according to a report by lobby group British Marine.

It said that the depreciation of the pound since the EU referendum had boosted the sector by making products cheaper for international buyers.

Overseas sales for UK marine manufacturers rose by 4.7% last year.

It’s the sixth consecutive year of growth for the industry, British Marine said.

“These impressive figures demonstrate how the industry has successfully cashed in on the pound’s devaluation since the Brexit referendum in 2016,” said Howard Pridding, chief executive of British Marine.

Staycation boost

Revenues last reached £3.1bn in 2008-09 as recession gripped the world’s major economies.

The fall in the value of the pound has also helped the domestic market as holiday-makers decided to stay in the UK.

Examining the trends over the second half of last year British Marine said 60% of the industry’s tourism specialists reported an increase in sales over the summer.

Mr Pridding said: “As the pound has dipped, many Brits have rekindled their love for barges, yachting, watersports holidays and canal cruises in and around the UK.”

The figures were released as part of the opening of the five-day London Boat Show which runs until 14 January.

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