Published in the journal Nature, the study of the global exchange of alien plant species found that in total, 13,168 native plant species - or 3.9 per cent of the world's plant population - have not only found their way to new climes but become naturalised there.
In Britain, such species include Japanese knotweed and giant hogweed, but the UK has also contributed its own fair share of invasive plants to other countries - for example, the invasion of gorse in Australia, New Zealand, Chile and Hawaii.
North America has the most naturalised non-native plant species, while numbers are increasing the fastest, relative to land area, in the Pacific Islands. The majority of alien plants have originated from temperate Asia and Europe.
On 20 August Defra published a policy paper addressing plans to tackle invasive non-native species in the UK. It said between 10 and 15 per cent of non-native species that have naturalised in Britain cause adverse impacts.