While the UK economic outlook might not be good on a nationwide level, it’s still worth looking at the picture on a more local level especially when it comes to exports – something that the government has looked to to help get SMEs back on track. So, where better to start than the East Midlands, one of the regions in the UK with the highest concentrations of businesses.
The East Midlands is one area that’s taking advantage of all that exports have to offer small and medium businesses. Recent figures have shown exports are at their highest level since 2007, equalling a peak dating back to 1999. This is encouraging and demonstrates that businesses aren’t shying away from trying to grow their sales through new markets.
Figures released by HM Revenue and Customs show that exports from the East Midlands hit £13bn by the end of 2011, the highest figure in at least four years. This is looking like it will continue to rise, hopefully reaching new highs as 2012 continues.
Figures show that over the past 12 months exports have grown by over 14% adding up to £2.4bn. Imports have also grown 12.7%, totalling £2bn over the same period. This all comes in the wake of the UK Trade and Investment Campaign, a government backed initiative looking to boost exports from British companies to take advantage of the massive growth shown in Asian markets. East Midlands exports to China and India reached £940m in the last quarter alone – more than 19% higher than the same period last year.
All this is very encouraging, especially when in many areas businesses are struggling and sales are falling. Hopefully these figures will continue to grow and more businesses will flourish, helping to get the whole UK economy back on track.