Updated: Apr 6, 2021
For many decades now, the UK has been in trade deficit, meaning the country imports more than it exports. Although Trade in Services has enjoyed a year-on-year growth and positive trade balance, our trade in goods, which still makes up most of the country’s trade remains negative.
Recent statistics from ONS released in January 2021 indicated that exports and imports fell by 40.7% and 28.8% respectively – the biggest declines since these figures started being recorded; and yet the UK has embarked upon a journey of signing new trade agreements to ensure both UK exporters and Importers can continue to trade and capitalise on the opportunities the world has to offer.
When companies think about exporting, many can only relate to the movement of goods. However, the UK is the second largest exporter of services in the world after the USA. One of our strongest exporting service sectors is Financial and Legal services. The UK exports a wide range of expertise ranging from manufacturing and engineering to fintech, education and more.
So, whilst companies remain very much focused on adapting to the new way of trading with our most important economic bloc trading partner, the EU, the reality is that by 2050 most of the world’s GDP growth will be fuelled by developing and emerging markets; although it is also important to highlight that we will continue to develop strong commercial and investment ties with our neighbour markets.
If you are a Micro or SME who has not considered exporting or has done so occasionally, take a look at why exporting can be a true catalyst for growing your business.
Increasing your sales and your competitiveness
By expanding your vision of the market, you will boost your sales potential and avoid saturated local market. An expanded market may allow you to increase your profits and expand your business. Additionally, by exporting you can be exposed to new ideas and marketing techniques, which can propel your business to a better position in order to increase competitiveness.
Extending the products' lifecycle and selling excess production
First, if your products are approaching the end of their life in the domestic market, you should know that there might be potential customers out of this market, so exporting would be a solution to continue selling your products. Moreover, excess production is also a good reason to export goods, avoiding deep discounts or the disposal of surplus products.
When you are no longer depending on sales within the domestic market, you will be better able to adapt to economic changes. In case of unfavourable economic conditions in the local market, the impact on your business activity might not be as significant if you are exporting to foreign countries.
Benefits the UK economy
In addition to increasing your profits, it helps the UK economy. In fact, UK companies, which export contribute to national productivity growth.
Ready to Go Global but need some help?
Take a look how the Chamber and our partners can help you in your exporting journey!
Register for our free Bitesize Session New Rules: Export Basics this week - 8th of April, which looks at the processes involved in exporting a product from the UK.
First time or occasional exporter seeking to grow through your exports and don’t know how ‘export ready’ you are? Complete our free international trade readiness assessment and receive a free report about your level of readiness.
Want to attend some Export training and access some funding? Click here for more info.
Need help writing your Export Plan? Why not use our Free Export Guide?
Need help identifying your next export market and don’t know where to start? Check our Market Identification Service
Check our wide range of international trade services here