As well as having serious implications for people’s health and the NHS, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues to have a significant impact on businesses and the economy. As the situation develops, we’re updating our analysis of the UK economic impact regularly to help you with your response and planning. New and updated insights will be available on a regular basis.
There could be fewer babies born in 2021 than in any year since records began.
We expect the health, social and economic effects of the pandemic to result in a ‘baby bust’, where the postponement of pregnancies during the pandemic translates into a dramatic decline in birth rates in 2021.
London’s population is expected to decline for the first time in the 21st century.
COVID-19 has fundamentally changed the way we view cities. We anticipate that in 2021, a shift away from city-living is likely to both increase the number of people moving out of the capital, and decrease the number of people moving in.
Net migration with the EU could turn negative in 2021.
We expect that within the year, the number of EU nationals who leave the UK could be more than those who settle. This will be driven by the end of the transition period, and the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on the sectors where EU migrants are highly represented.
The UK’s unemployment rate is expected to record its largest ever quarterly increase in Q2.
Despite tentative signs of an economic recovery in 2021, we expect to see the unemployment rate jump by a record 2.5 percentage points in the second quarter, as the government’s furlough scheme comes to an end.
Over 10m people could experience food poverty of some kind.
We expect that existing inequalities will be worsened by rising food prices, which could increase by as much as 10%, as well by projected increases in unemployment.
Gender and ethnicity pay gaps are expected to increase in 2021, potentially reversing a decade of progress on the former.
We expect that the economic impact of the pandemic will be felt disproportionately by women and people from BAME backgrounds, as they are overrepresented in the sectors that have been most affected by social distancing restrictions.
One in eight cars newly registered in Great Britain are likely to be electric or hybrid.
With the transport sector accounting for a third of all carbon dioxide emissions, the UK will have to transition away from petrol and diesel cars if it is to meet its target of net zero emissions by 2050. Following years of progress, the UK has the potential to see 1 in 8 new cars be electric or hybrid in 2021.
By the end of 2021, the majority of electricity generated in the UK could be from renewable sources.
If it is to meet its net zero targets, the UK will need to transition away from fossil fuels and towards renewable energy sources. In the same year it is hosting the COP26, the UK could reach this historic milestone, showcasing its progress on the green agenda.