Kenny McKay
Mark Lane

Member Article

Asia gives hope as Yorkshire exports fall

HMRC’s release of the regional trade statistics shows the value of exports from Yorkshire & Humber fell by £380m in 2012 to £15,741m.

However, according to KPMG the underlying trend is positive as the drop is due to an expected fall in exports to the EU, while good news lies in the 13% year on year growth in the region’s exports to Asia, which totalled £1,912m in 2012.

Kenny McKay, partner in KPMG’s Leeds Restructuring practice, commented: “High growth markets are definitively where the prize of prosperity lies so it’s good to see Yorkshire’s sales to Asia and Oceana rise in 2012, albeit they still form too small a part of the region’s export portfolio.

“Indeed this increase is far more important even than the overall drop in export value. This was due to the fall in sales to the EU, which was expected given the economic turmoil in this market during the last year or so.

“The geography of growth lies in the East and Africa. After all, GDP growth in the next five years is forecast at between 3.3% and 8% in the BRIC countries compared to 1.9% in the EU and 1.6% in the UK so Yorkshire’s entrepreneurs need to be brave and find ways to enter these - and other - new and very different markets.

“Of course this is fraught with challenges, the key one being pursuing the correct method of market entry, with a supporting cast of concerns from working within a new legal and cultural context, to managing from a distance. Really understanding a new market and precisely how its idiosyncrasies impact on a product or service is critical – so my top tip is do the due diligence.”

Yorkshire’s top export sectors last year were machinery and transport, mineral fuels and manufactured goods.

The value of the region’s exports also fell on a quarter on quarter basis, totalling £3,986m in Q4 2012 compared to £4,003m in Q3 2012.

The UK’s total export sales rose in 2012, to £296,223m from £295,474m in 2011 and also grew between Q3 2012 and Q4 2012 by £1,296m to £74,396m.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Mark Lane .

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