By Claire West

The internet is worth £100bn to the UK economy, more than 7% of national income according to a report out today for Google by Boston Consulting Group.

Justin Cooke, the Chair of the British Interactive Media Association (BIMA), the organisation that supports and promotes the digital industry in Britain and CEO of Fortune Cookie - one of the most respected interactive design agencies in the world says:

“These findings highlight how important the digital industry is to the UK economy. Britain has always been known as a nation of shopkeepers. The reality is that now we have one of the world’s most advanced digital economies and we can use this to become a nation of online retailers trading our way around the digital world.

“The UK leads the way in digital services as people from all over the world buy British because we have some of the best people and technology in the world. We need to bang the drum and celebrate this. Britain is currently going through a huge shift that has put digital at the heart of the economy.”

However, one finding also showed that there was still somewhat of a ‘Digital divide’ in Britain, with Scotland and parts of the north still falling behind the South East.

Clodagh Murphy, director of Eclipse Internet said;

““While it’s great to see the internet making such a positive contribution to the UK economy, today’s research shows a clear digital divide in the UK. Some parts of the country, including Scotland and Northern Ireland, are still lagging far behind London and the south-east when it comes to accessing the internet but this is starting to change. Eclipse is excited to be part of the Fibre roll out for both Cornwall and Northern Ireland which will help to bridge this gap.

Ultimately, we needs to focus on ensuring that every part of the country has the right level of access and where internet services such as Fibre aren’t available, we are developing alternative solutions for our customers.”