The latest figures on economic performance, for the year 2012, have only just been released. These show that the Cornish economy slipped back, and that Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly was the worst performing region of those that are given European Objective One funding.
According to Mebyon Kernow’s leader in Konsel Kernow (Cornwall Council UA), Dick Cole, the briefing from Cornwall Council says: “The figures from the latest Gross Value Added (GVA) release show that GVA fell in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly in 2012 compared to 2011. The overall UK economy grew, as did most NUTS 2 regions.
“Our position has therefore deteriorated compared to other areas. In all, six regions saw a decline in 2012 compared to 2011. The relatively good figures comparing performance in 2012 with 1999 reflect the above average growth rates in the early part of the period.
“Our total GVA in 2012 was £7bn, down 0.3% on 2011. The revised figures show that between 2010 and 2011 the Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly economy declined by 3.3% while the UK economy grew by 4.2%.
“In per capita terms, our GVA figure for 2012 was £13,036, down 1.0% on 2011. Per capita GVA is lower than it was in 2007; a characteristic shared with another four UK regions.
“When indexed against the UK per capita average in 2012, the figure for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly was 61.2%, down on the 2011 figure of 62.5%. Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly is now below West Wales and the South Wales Valleys, reversing trends of the previous years.
“Between 1999 and 2012 our total output increased by 76%, the third highest of the 37 NUTS 2 regions, the UK total increased by 66%. Our per capita increase was 60%, the fourth highest of the NUTS 2 regions.
“Growth rates for Cornwall rose in the early period, peaking in 2002, since when growth has fallen back.
“Total GVA in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly peaked in 2010 at £7,282 million; the 2012 figure was 3.3% down, the worst performance of any NUTS 2 region. At the same time UK GVA rose by 4.2%. The bulk of this decline occurred in 2011 with essentially a static economy in 2012.”
2012 saw a significant reduction in Westminster funding to Cornwall Council that forced a reduction in a range of economic activity and social spending.