Manchester-Beijing Service Major Catalyst for the Northern Economy

An independent study, launched at the British Embassy in Beijing by Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham, has found that direct flights between Manchester and Beijing has led to significant economic, social and cultural benefits across the North of England.

The report found, for example, that there has been a 38{c7c01e3b9ccc3a08f309dc8d604bc8c3417eedd4145a1a2810013179d8615fd2} increase in the number of Chinese visitors to the North since 2016 and the number of Chinese students in Greater Manchester has grown 9{c7c01e3b9ccc3a08f309dc8d604bc8c3417eedd4145a1a2810013179d8615fd2} in the same period. The report also found that there has been a surge in the number of World-leading academics attracted to carry out research at Northern universities over the past year.

The findings are replicated at the Manchester New Square marketing suite, which has seen a rise in enquiries from Chinese buyers, looking either for investment opportunities or apartments for family, occasionally for children studying in Manchester.

Rob Butler, Sales Consultant at JLL comments, “There are a number of reasons that we are seeing an increase in Chinese investment in Manchester. The city has one of the oldest and largest Chinese communities in the UK and some of our buyers already own property here, but direct flights to China obviously help accessibility and open up new markets and opportunities.

“It is also perhaps no surprise, given our close proximity at Manchester New Square to the city’s major universities, that we have had interest from both academics and parents whose children will be studying here. Given the cost of student accommodation and the fact that Manchester is seeing greater capital growth than other parts of the UK, some are choosing to buy rather than rent. We are a short stroll to Piccadilly Station too, with fast connections to the airport.”

As a result of the report’s findings, it is likely that more direct flights to China could be added in the future.

Zheng Xiyuan, Consul General, People’s Republic of China in Manchester, said:

“Each year there are more students, tourists, and businesses coming to Manchester to experience the unique charm, culture and opportunity that the North of England has to offer.

“With our ever-closer social, economic, and cultural links, the North of England is well placed to collaborate with China on major strategic opportunities spearheaded by the Belt and Road Initiative. I look forward to seeing a closer China-UK relationship bringing prosperity to the people of both nations.”