Economy and Industry
In 1998 Norfolk had a Gross Domestic Product of £9,319 million, making it 1.5% of England's economy and 1.25% of the United Kingdom's economy. The GDP per head was £11,825, compared to £13,635 for East Anglia, £12,845 for England and £12,438 for the United Kingdom. In 1999–2000 the county had an unemployment rate of 5.6%, compared to 5.8% for England and 6.0% for the UK.
Important business sectors include tourism, energy (oil, gas and renewables), advanced engineering and manufacturing, and food and farming.
Much of Norfolk's fairly flat and fertile land has been drained for use as arable land. The principal arable crops are sugar beet, wheat, barley (for brewing) and oil seed rape. Over 20% of employment in the county is in the agricultural and food industries.
Well-known companies in Norfolk are Aviva (formerly Norwich Union), Colman's (part of Unilever) and Bernard Matthews Farms. The Construction Industry Training Board is based on the former airfield of RAF Bircham Newton. The BBC East region is centred on Norwich, although it covers an area as far west as Milton Keynes; the BBC does however provide BBC Radio Norfolk solely for the county.
New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership has been recently established by business leaders to help grow jobs across Norfolk and Suffolk. They have secured an enterprise zone to help grow businesses in the energy sector and established the two counties as being a centre for growing services and products for the green economy.
To help local industry in Norwich, Norfolk, the local council offered a wireless internet service but this has now been withdrawn following the end of the funding period.
Read more about this topic: Norfolk
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