Plenty of help to break into key ex­port mar­kets

Solihull News - - CAROLINE SPELMAN MP - Caro­line Spel­man

AS the UK turns its at­ten­tion to more trade be­yond the Eu­ro­pean Union, lo­cal busi­nesses may be pleased to know there is plenty of help avail­able from the Depart­ment for In­ter­na­tional Trade, which has ap­pointed Trade Com­mis­sion­ers in the key ex­port mar­kets of the US, Latin Amer­ica and South Asia.

Sec­tor leads have also been ap­pointed for the au­to­mo­tive, phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal and food & drink in­dus­tries.

Most im­por­tantly, there is fi­nance avail­able from the Depart­ment to cover the credit risk in­sur­ance which can some­times put com­pa­nies off try­ing to ex­port.

The UK still lags be­hind Ger­many, France and Italy in terms of our ex­port pref­er­ence, even with the great suc­cess of com­pa­nies like Jaguar Land Rover, Di­a­geo and Voda­fone.

There­fore, as the re­gion of the UK which ex­ports more than any other, the West Mid­lands has taken most ad­van­tage of these of­fers of help but we need to do more.

In­dia is the dom­i­nant mar­ket in South Asia and with its econ­omy grow­ing at 8% per an­num it will soon over­take the UK as the world’s 5th largest econ­omy cre­at­ing greater op­por­tu­ni­ties for global trade.

Latin Amer­ica, which has also been tra­di­tion­ally seen as a tricky mar­ket, is now grow­ing at a steady pace.

Ex­port­ing is be­com­ing eas­ier and, again, the grow­ing mid­dle class has appetite for high- end Bri­tish goods so there is great op­por­tu­nity for com­pa­nies of all sizes and UK Ex­port Fi­nance.

At the present time, it is dis­ap­point­ing to see the United States has im­posed tar­iffs on many steel and alu­minium im­ports – con­trary to its free trade im­age, mar­kets see this White House de­ci­sion as highly pro­tec­tion­ist.

To tackle this, the Prime Min­is­ter did high­light the im­por­tance of con­tin­u­ing trade with Amer­ica at the G7 meet­ing last week.

Af­ter all, the mul­ti­lat­eral rules- based trad­ing sys­tem we use to­day pro­vides a strong frame­work for en­abling free and fair global trade but the un­jus­ti­fied de­ci­sion by the US to ap­ply tar­iffs to EU steel and alu­minium im­ports is deeply wor­ry­ing. To re­solve this we need to avoid con­tin­ued tit- for- tat es­ca­la­tion, and main­tain a con­struc­tive di­a­logue with our part­ners.

If you are a lo­cal busi­ness and would like to learn more about what ad­vice/ sup­port is on of­fer, www. gov. uk/ gov­ern­ment/ or­gan­i­sa­tions/ uk- ex­port­fi­nance is there to help.

The United States has im­posed tar­iffs on many steel and alu­minium im­ports

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