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UIC - London - Location & Importance

The location and importance of the city in the UK and the wider world

London can stake a claim to be the world’s greatest city, it is certainly one of the most globalised, connected and influential places on planet earth even if it isn’t the largest city by area or population size.
London can be found in the South East of England, located on the River Thames which has been influential in its growth, and in the centre of the densest population of the UK.  It also hosts the parliament of the UK.

Location of London

Within Europe, London is part of Europe’s economic core, the area producing the majority of the GDP or wealth of Europe, in what is called Europe’s “hot banana” alongside Paris, Geneva, and Milan.  London also has a Global reach, through its major airports Heathrow and Gatwick, and its economic pull via the City of London and the Stock Exchange.

London’s population has started to grow again after shrinking post World War II, and currently stands at over 8 million.
London remains an influential city both within the UK and the wider world, look at the fact file below.

Location and population
• London’s population is 12.5% of the UK’s on just 0.6% of the land
• It is 36.5 miles west to east and 30 miles North to south
• Peak population in 1939
• It is predicted to go beyond that level soon and is currently 8.3 million
• 88,000 babies were born in London in 2013
• The wider London area has a population of over 9 million people
• It is the world’s 14th largest Capital city
• Tokyo is the largest with 37 million people!
Travel Hub
• Journeys by private car have fallen in London since 2000
• Public transport journeys have increased by 40% since 2000
• Half a million bike journeys are made every day in the capital
• London has several major airports including Heathrow, Gatwick, City and London Stansted
• Heathrow carried 69.4million passengers in 2011, more than all the other airports put together. It connects to cities all over the world
• London is one of the most visited cities in the world
• London has the highest tourist spend in the world with $21.1billion in 2011
• There are more visits there from the USA, but 2/3 of all visits are from Europeans
• The highest average total-spend came from people from the UAE at £1,625 per visitor…
• But Norwegians spend more per night a £157
• And Indian visitors spend the longest time there at 17 nights
• Londoners earn 23% more than the UK average
• Londoners spend 24% more than the average!
• The average London house price went above £500,000 in 2013 compared to a national average of £249,000
• London has the 6th largest city economy after Tokyo, New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Paris
• London accounts for over a fifth of the Gross Value added of the UK
• London generates 22% of the UK’s GDP
• London has 40 higher education institutions including some of the World’s top universities
• 410,000 students attend these institutions
• London represents one-third of higher education institutions nationally
• And one fifth of the UK’s student population
• Over ½ of Londoners have a degree
• The number of businesses per 1000 population is higher in London at 75 than elsewhere in the UK at 54
• In London 11.2% of companies had a turnover of at least a million pounds compared to 9% for the rest of the UK
• London is home to 15 of the head offices of the 250 largest companies in the world
• 800,000 people commute to London for work every day
• There were 5 million jobs in London at the start of 2012
• The city’s population swells by 1.3 million every day because of people going to London to work and tourism This makes London’s daytime population 9.3 million
Cultural diversity
• Over 2 million Londoners do not speak English at home
• The 3 most common languages spoken at home other than English are Bengali, Urdu and Polish
• One third of Londoners were born abroad…the top 3 countries are India, Poland and Bangladesh
• 36% of Londoners are from Black, Asian or minority ethnic group
Green space
• 65% of London’s land is either gardens, public green space or water
• 223 of London’s Parks and green spaces hold Green Flag awards
• London has 8 Royal Parks





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