Although the port city of Bristol was once home to a thriving maritime trade, its economy has in more recent years depended on the creative media, electronics, and aerospace industries.
(A) its economy has in more recent years depended
(B) their economy has in more recent years depended
(C) its economy had depended in more recent years
(D) its economy having in more recent years depended
(E) their economy has been dependent in more recent years
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Pronoun Agreement, Collective Noun, Verb Tense
Bristol is a city, which is a collective noun and thus singular. As a result, a singular pronoun (its) is required, eliminating (B) and (E). (C) is incorrect because the past perfect (had depended) should only be used to refer to a past action that came before a second action. In this case, the verb in question is referring to an action that came after, as indicated by the phrase in more recent years. (D) is also incorrect because the use of the gerund having rather than the conjugated verb has creates a fragment. (A) correctly uses the singular pronoun its as well as the present perfect (has depended) to refer to a recent occurrence.