Dorset's Economy

Our vision is for Dorset to become a high productivity economy with high Gross Value Added (GVA) per hour worked or per worker or FTE. We will achieve greater productivity through increasing income and reducing costs to businesses. We want to support and enable the delivery of enough new homes to meet the demand from those who live and work in Dorset. Where possible, housing should be co-located with sustainable transport hubs, and along with new employment sites, should contribute to the self-containment of urban areas. Digital technology and the potential for flexible working should be integral to new housing developments.

Dorset has just over 30,000 businesses. Around 90% of these are micro-businesses with less than ten employees, which is consistent with the national business size profile. The number of new business in Dorset has been growing since 2009, but at a lower rate than in the UK as a whole. Our future economic growth needs a healthy rate of new business starts. Our vision is for a strong and growing business population, with high rates of business start-ups, and good business survival rates. We will have domestic businesses which are trading outside of Dorset and outside of the UK, including tourism businesses in Dorset that are attracting customers from the rest of the UK and verseas. We will have high levels of inward investment and businesses with high levels of Research & Development (R&D) and innovation. The latter will be achieved, in part, by our businesses working closely with our two universities (including a specialist arts university). Our key sectors will be core to the growth of the business population.

For further statistics about Dorset please click on the link below which will open up the Excel spreadsheet (please note that you will need to select the read only option).

Dorset LEP dashboard 


"Dorset is home to a wealth of internationally competitive companies and many have their headquarters in Dorset.  Dorset offers a strong culture of enterprise and innovation across key sectors such as Aerospace, Advanced Engineering & Manufacturing, Creative & Digital Industries and Financial Services, with emerging sectors in Cyber Security, Life Sciences and Agri-Tech."


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