London is a bustling hub for international development nongovernmental organizations, consultancy firms, and governmental organizations alike. Westminster is home to the United Kingdom government’s Department for International Development — responsible for expending the majority of the country’s official development assistance — while the headquarters for a large number of international and local charities are also located throughout the city.
The cosmopolitan and internationally accessible nature of the capital makes it a prime location for global development employers to be based. Charities can receive up to 80 percent tax relief on property rent from the U.K. government and the number of cultural centers, development experts, and global development events held in London has created a close community of international development professionals.
The looming future of Brexit, however, poses uncertainty for some development organizations based there. U.K. charities could lose their eligibility for most EU development funding after the country leaves the EU, as Devex reported last year. While a large number of charities are still headquartered in London, in recent years there have been some making the move away from the U.K. and instead setting up in developing countries or other locations worldwide.
ActionAid moved its headquarters from London to Johannesburg in Jan. 2004, with the intention of actively involving the people and communities they aid on the ground.