Luxury may help heal Europe's woes

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The Independent Online

Making and exporting luxury goods could be a route out of Europe's economic decline, according to Brussels.

Latest figures show that fashion and high-end industries are a significant contributor to the economy, each accounting for 3 per cent of the EU's GDP, with the latter expecting to employ more then two million people by 2020.

The European Commission vice-president, Antonio Tajani, said: "The world high-end market is dominated by European entrepreneurs, such as Bernard Arnault-led Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy, that have continued to drive growth and create jobs in Europe."

A spokeswoman for LVMH, which employs 3,300 people in the UK, said: "The economic and cultural importance of the luxury goods sector to Europe is now being fully recognised."

Research from Frontier Economics shows the UK's luxury sector turnover is expected to grow by 57 per cent, reaching €11.2bn (£9bn) by 2015. The report highlighted the cachet of "Made in Britain" as a brand to export worldwide.

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