The Low Post News

Prostitution and Drugs Add over $15 Billion to Economy in UK

The illegal activities of prostitution and drugs added billions of dollars to the economy of the United Kingdom under an overhaul of how the annual gross domestic product will be calculated.

The decision is another sign of government’s attempt to grasp a better handle of how much of a role illegal activity is playing in their individual economies.

The Office of National Statistics in the UK said on Thursday that the changes to methods used to total GDP, which will be in force during September would have boosted the size of the British economy in 2009 by more than 2.3% or over $55 billion. The agency said it did not make similar calculations in any of the years following 2009.

The ONS has estimated that $15 billion of the annual increase would come from activities that are illegal, in particular the importing, production and the sale of drugs that are illegal, and prostitution.

Around $8 billion of that increase reflects contribution from sex trade. It is estimated that the amount of contribution of prostitution and drugs by looking through data from surveys from users and police records.

The role in the national economy of criminal enterprise is just one of a number of changes planned by the ONS. New information due in September is expected to indicate big changes in the shape, growth and size of the economy of the UK in prior decades.

Other changes include the reassessment of the role of different foundations and other similar agencies that are non-profit. Those should add over $36 billion to the 2009 economy in the UK.

In addition, changes to how company inventories and investment are calculated will cut off close to $15 billion. Some banking services that are free will also be included adding another $8 billion.

Additional changes to statistics in the UK have been planned for September as part of the broader European Union initiative that is meant to align and improve member states’ methods of calculating statistics.

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