A BT-backed study by Hatch has found that BT added £24 billion in Gross Value Added (GVA) to the UK economy in the 2019/2020 financial year

Throughout our ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the invaluable nature of connectivity has been highlighted time and time again. Indeed, governments around the world are relying on the telecoms sector to help their economies bounce back from the economic impact of Covid-19, maximising the value of quality connectivity for society at large.
But just how valuable are these operators to national economies? 
Today, consultancy firm Hatch may be able to offer some answers, having conducted a study on behalf of BT group to estimate the operator’s value to the UK economy. The results are impressive, showing that the ex-incumbent operator Group provided around £24 billion in GVA to the UK economy and supported around 300,000 full-time jobs (both directly and via its suppliers) in the 2019/2020 financial year. 
The report suggests that BT spent around £10.1 billion with UK based suppliers in the financial year, a large part of which came from the maintenance of the Group’s fleet of 35,000 vehicles. BT has plans to transition to 28,000 electric vehicles by 2030. 
In addition, those receiving a pension from BT supported around 26,600 more UK jobs, contributing nearly £2 billion.
“I’m immensely proud of the contribution our colleagues make in supporting the UK economy. At an important time for our country, our spending on people, networks and suppliers, provides a vital economic boost for the UK. The wider impact of that spending helps to sustain communities and small businesses right across the UK,” said Jane Wood, BT Group’s Director of Nations and Regions.
BT itself has 82,800 employees in the UK, however, this is likely to be further reduced. The company is currently in the process of consolidating its office space in the UK, shrinking the company’s 300 offices to just 30. In addition, the company is in the middle of a wide-scale cost-cutting programme that has been ongoing since 2018, which has seen around 13,000 staff cut since June 2019. 
Such downsizing has not been well received. As a result of compulsory redundancies, site closures and changes to pay, terms and conditions, 74% of 45,000 members of the Communication Workers Union (CWU) were balloted across BT Group in December last year, with 98% voting in favour of taking industrial action ahead of a formal strike ballot.
The healthy telecoms industry is central to a rapid economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. Learn more about the sector’s plans for recovery in 2021 at this year’s Connected Britain event 
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