New British Chambers of Commerce and DHL report confirms growth in Yorkshire exporting

24 February 2015

Yorkshire and Humber has among the highest increases in exporting activity, according to a new report by British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) and DHL Express.

The region, where Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership has launched its We are international campaign to boost exports in ten local authority areas,  is seeing the highest growth in exports along with  Wales and London.

The report also says that most British exporters (58%) believe their profitability will increase this year, in spite of continuing political volatility in the Eurozone and Ukraine.

The Trade Confidence Index, which measures UK exporting activity and business confidence among more than 2,300 exporting firms, also shows that four out of five exporters tried to recruit staff at the end of last year.

The volume of trade documentation index issued by Accredited Chambers of Commerce rose to 117.43, showing that UK businesses are growing internationally and breaking into new overseas markets.

Key findings in the report are:

  • 58 per cent of exporters expect their profitability to rise during the next 12 months
  • Manufacturing firms are more confident about improving their turnover now than they were in Q3 2014 – 66 per cent compared to 61 per cent
  • 36 per cent reported increases in export sales while only 18 per cent reported a fall.
  • More than four out of five exporting businesses are trying to recruit staff
  • A third of exporting firms say that the exchange rate is affecting their ability to trade globally.

Director general of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC),  John Longworth, says: “British exporters are rising to the challenge in spite of the uncertain global outlook although we are yet to see this translate into stronger trade and current account figures.

“We know that when businesses do export, they grow, on average, 20 per cent more than businesses that don’t. With the vast majority of exporters looking to take on additional staff, they are generating growth and prosperity for the nation.

“If we are to make real progress towards rebalancing the economy, the business community and the government must work in partnership to ‘step-change’ our approach to supporting existing and potential exporters.  

“To link more UK businesses to the vast opportunities around the world, we must foster the development of potential exporters, many of whom are unable to access finance even before they are able to consider global expansion. Strengthening the UK’s international trade performance must be a top priority for any incoming government.”

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