The economy of Jersey has seen a great deal of change over the last century. While the mainstays of the island have historically been agriculture and tourism, the emergence of the financial services sector in the mid-twentieth century has outpaced the more traditional sectors to become the largest industry on the island in terms of output and employment.
The island’s airport served over 740,000 passenger arrivals in 2014, and is set to host just under 300 outbound flights per week in the 2016 peak season. Jersey’s air network is dominated by connections to the United Kingdom, and especially southern England.
The report estimates that Jersey ran an overall trade surplus in the order of £0.6 billion in 2014. This has been calculated by comparing official estimates of the island’s gross value added with estimates of domestic consumption, business investment and government expenditure. The difference between these is the trade balance.
Jersey’s export performance compares favourably to the United Kingdom’s.
The total value of exported goods and services is equivalent to 64% of the island’s total gross value added; for the United Kingdom, the comparable statistic is around 28%.
Although running a trade surplus overall, the report estimates that, for 2014, Jersey was a net importer of goods to the value of £600 million. Given the lack of freight capacity to anywhere other than the United Kingdom, almost all of these imports will have been shipped in from the south coast of England or by air from British airports.
The report estimates that the island imported in the region of £1.8 billion of goods and services from Great Britain and Northern Ireland in 2014, which was £0.5 billion more than it exported to there.
An estimated 36% of exports by such businesses are destined for the United Kingdom, while the remaining £1 billion are exports to outside the sterling zone.
Jersey provides an estimated overall gross benefit to the United Kingdom economy to the order of 700,000 jobs and £39 billion per annum of economic activity based on all net investment to the United Kingdom.
Accounting for the impact of trade, business mediated through Jersey, foreign investment, tax generated, and netting out the possible losses from tax leakage and the provision of defence, Jersey provides an estimated net benefit to the United Kingdom economy to the order of 250,000 jobs and £14 billion per annum of economic activity.
Jersey's Value to Britain, Capital Economics - Report extracts