South East sets export record in 2011
The South East was the UK’s biggest exporting region in 2011, with figures for that year hitting a record £42.8 billion, according to the latest Regional Trade Statistics from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).
A decline in export growth in the fourth quarter (Q4) meant however that the region recorded only 1.9% growth in 2011, enough to beat the 2010 record but the smallest increase of all the UK regions.
Lewis Scott, Regional Director for UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) South East, said that local firms need to rise to the exporting challenge if the region and the wider UK is to grow.
The latest figures show that the EU remains the most important export market for the South East, with a 12-month export value of £19.1 billion, followed by North America, Asia, the Middle East and North Africa.
Mr Scott said that UKTI could help firms to explore these markets by offering free one-to-one advice and support.
"We have just announced the winner of our Export for Growth prize, Crawley airport ground handling experts, Avtura Ltd," he continued. "The high standard shown by the winner and the standard of entries in general demonstrates that there is a huge amount of creativity and innovation in the region."
He called on other small and medium-sized firms to rise to the challenge to “Sell British” and to exploit the opportunities available to them.