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Estimates of total expenditure on research and development (R&D) across different market sectors by UK country and English region for 2019.

Main points

  • An estimated total of £794 million was spent on R&D in 2019 in Wales; this was a small decrease of £4 million (0.5%) compared with 2018.
  • This decrease was largely a result of a fall in higher education R&D, down by £19 million (5.6%) over the year, after a considerable £102 million (42.5%) increase between 2017 and 2018.
  • R&D expenditure in Wales represented 2.1% of total UK R&D expenditure and 1.0% of Welsh gross domestic product (GDP).
  • Business enterprise R&D accounted for 55.7% of the total in Wales, with higher education accounting for 40.7%, and government making up 2.9%.
  • In a small region such as Wales, the level of R&D expenditure can be influenced greatly by a small number of major projects commencing or ending, meaning the time series can be volatile.


This release provides estimates of R&D performed in, and funded by, the following four sectors of the UK economy:

  • business enterprise R&D (BERD)
  • higher education R&D (HERD)
  • government, including UK Research and Innovation R&D (GovERD)
  • private non-profit organisations R&D (PNPRD)

These sectors’ R&D data are known collectively as gross domestic expenditure on R&D (GERD).

Further information is available in the ONS release.

As agreed with the Office for Statistics Regulation, these statistics will be updated at 12.30pm on the day of release by ONS. StatsWales tables will follow within 48 hours.



Datasets and interactive tools


Samuel Musters

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Telephone: 0300 025 8099

Rydym yn croesawu galwadau yn Gymraeg / We welcome calls in Welsh.