Austria and the United Kingdom share a wide range of interests and concerns within the scope of European and International politics. Apart from a growing cooperation in many areas at a European level, positions on global matters also very often concur. As a result of the recent EU enlargement Austria`s new cultural and economic orientation opens new opportunities to foster a deepening relationship between the United Kingdom and Austria.
A matter of particular concern in our bilateral relations is the implementation of restitution measures defined by the National Fund and the General Settlement Fund of the Federal Republic of Austria for those Austrian victims of National Socialism who have found a new home in the United Kingdom.
The United Kingdom has been one of Austria’s most important trading partners for many years and is Austria’s eight largest export destination. The UK is also among Austria’s TOP 10 destinations for foreign direct investment — there are currently around 230 Austrian subsidiaries in the UK, employing over 17.200 people. The importance of Britain to the Austrian economy is also demonstrated by the tourism industry — over 730,000 British residents visited Austria in 2010, which makes the United Kingdom Austria’s fifth largest market for inbound tourists staying for one or more nights.
Being a major cultural metropolis, London is equally important to the ongoing development of Austria’s intellectual heritage and contemporary art scene. In turn, projects carried out by the Austrian Cultural Forum (ACF) very often provide a stimulus to the British cultural scene. Moreover, the ACF is also a platform for scientific research on Austria’s influence on Great Britain’s artistic and cultural heritage.