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Rob Morris

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When it comes to attracting talented workers, London is the city to beat. A report carried out by professional services firm Deloitte describes England’s capital as being “in a league of its own”, having seen a 16% rise in highly-skilled people from 2013 to 2016.

In that time, the number of talented workers moving to London rose by 235,000 to 1.7 million – higher than the 1.1 million people who relocated to New York during the same period.

There is a caveat: the report was done in March 2016, three months before the British people voted to leave the EU. Will Brexit affect London’s ability to attract highly skilled workers? No one knows at this stage, but the UK government’s message is clear: Britain is open for business and skilled workers are, as always, welcome.

Whatever happens in the coming months and years, we should feel confident that London will retain its position as one of the world’s leading business and financial centres. The city has a history of handling adversity, be it the global financial crisis of 2008 or recessions in the 1980s and 1990s, and Brexit is just another challenge to overcome.

Looking to the future, industries such as digital – which grew 32% faster than the wider UK economy from 2011 to 2014 – professional services, finance, IT, engineering and medical will continue to rely on talented people.

If anything, demand for skilled people in some sectors has never been greater. Take manufacturing, where three quarters of companies struggled to find the right employees between 2013 and 2016. An industry report by business group EEF found that the industry was suffering a skills shortage. Similarly, engineering companies are struggling to find talented people for an industry that contributes about £280 billion to the British economy.

The figures highlight a trend: that London has always relied on skilled workers, be they British or otherwise – and that will never change.

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