Export growth is encouraging, say BCC
40% of exporters saw an increase in export sales over the last three months, according to the DHL/BCC Trade Confidence Index.
The survey is a measure of the UK’s exporting health, and reveals that many businesses are expecting the trend to continue in Q2 2012.
Over a thousand exporters were surveyed, along with analysis of export documentation, and the findings indicate an almost 8% increase on the same quarter last year, demonstrating that growth in export goods continued.
The survey series shows that many exporters found last year challenging, with high input prices for oil and other commodities hammering many firms, however the survey for the first quarter shows that price pressures are easing, and this combined with lower inflation could make it an easier year for many exporters.
The balance of firms reporting increases in export sales and export orders rose to levels last seen in Q4 2010.
John Longworth, Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce, said: “At the end of 2011, there was a huge amount of uncertainty surrounding the eurozone sovereign debt crisis and its impact on UK firms.
“But the beginning of 2012 saw some semblance of calm retuning which has translated into greater confidence and activity among UK exporters.
“Export orders and sales have risen strongly in Q1, and documentation returns are the highest on record. While it is too early to say this represents the start of a strong recovery, it’s fair to say that it is a reason to be optimistic - in particular contrast to some of the most recent economic data.
“Exports are vital to the rebalancing of the UK economy, which is why it’s crucial that we support firms looking to trade internationally.
“We must maintain the UK’s position as a strong trading nation. So making sure our business owners and exporters of the future are well-equipped with the right skills is key.
“Only by looking at international trade from every possible angle now will we have the building blocks for a vibrant exporting community in the future.”
Phil Couchman, CEO of DHL Express UK and Ireland said: “Despite the amount of flux in trading confidence and activity over the past year, this report indicates that there is light at the end of the tunnel for UK exporters.
“Both export sales and orders have strengthened within the first quarter of 2012, an increase after four consecutive quarters of decline.
“We are also seeing an increase in trade to the booming BRIC nations, including Brazil which has recently overtaken the UK to become the sixth largest economy in the world.
This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Tom Keighley .
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