British Chambers of Commerce calls for export boost for businesses
The British Chambers of Commerce has called for more concerted efforts to find solutions to challenges facing would-be exporters in the UK.
The head of one of the UK’s most influential business organisations has voiced his support for further efforts to promote exports from the UK.
In his keynote speech at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) International Trade Conference in London last week, BCC director general John Longworth said that economic growth means this is a great time to be a business in the UK, with prospects remaining positive across different sectors.
Mr Longworth explained that awareness is a crucial part of the puzzle – informing firms of the opportunities available overseas and giving them the space and time to explore them will really help to break down the barriers to trade. In addition, offering them practical support can improve their confidence and give them the push they need to start growing overseas.
“And we know that when businesses do have a go at exporting, they grow, on average, 20 per cent more than businesses that don’t export. It’s not rocket science, but it is challenging,” he added.
He was speaking as BCC’s Quarterly Economic Survey was published showing that manufacturing and exports both fell in the third quarter of the year compared to the previous three months.
David Kern, BCC chief economist, indicated that a more emphatic response from the government may well be needed.
“Noticeable falls in all the export balances and increased signs of slower growth require a forceful policy response,” he said.
“UK growth cannot rely permanently on consumer spending, and on unsustainable current account and budget deficits. Unless exports and investment play a bigger role in growth, the recovery will stall.”