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Export Week: Northants firms fulfilling their global ambitions

With Export Week now under way, this is a prime opportunity to reflect on how Northamptonshire firms are fulfilling their global ambitions.

Our latest Quarterly Economic Survey for the first quarter of 2014 released this week makes it clear that county firms are growing their business through exports.

The report reveals that all our manufacturers who took part in the independent survey saw their export sales remain the same or increase over the last three months. That’s up from 88% on Q4 of 2013.

‘78% of manufacturers reported an actual increase in sales’

Here’s another interesting statistic: out of this, 78% reported an actual increase in sales, a 13% rise on the previous quarter.

But it’s not just the manufacturers who are benefiting from growth in global sales but those in the service sector too with 98% (up from 93%) of firms reporting similar or increased export sales over the same period.

Go back a few months earlier and you may recall Northamptonshire Chamber of Commerce publishing data which showed the value of goods shipped overseas from Northamptonshire had more than doubled to £44million in the 12 months to February.

‘What is evident is Northamptonshire’s exporters are growing in confidence’

Although these statistics are based on customers using our documentation service, and we realise that not every country requires paperwork to allow goods into a country, it does provide a snapshot of Northamptonshire’s export activity.

What is evident is Northamptonshire’s exporters are growing in confidence.

As a Chamber and accredited issuer of export documentation we are keen to support novice and experienced exporters and are always looking at ways to ease the journey to becoming an international firm and achieve growth by trading overseas.

Our experienced International Trade team can help companies navigate their way through all of the regulatory procedures and documents that is required for doing business on a global scale. Chamber members also receive a discount on all International Trade services.

New Letter of Credit service

On 1 April, we launched our new Letter of Credit service to ensure exporters receive payment for their shipped goods providing all the terms are met.

The bi-annual Export Week co-ordinated by UK Trade and Industry(UKTI) – the Government body to increase trade abroad - also provides valuable support and awareness of opportunities for firms wishing to go global.

Two years ago, the government set a target to increase the UK exports to £100 billion by 2020 and to see a rise in the number of exporters by over 100,000 by the same period.

A stretching but achievable target, especially if the small to medium size business sector drive this export led growth.

To aid companies to export more, or to start exporting for the first time, the government is transforming the support available to those companies wishing to deal with 41 high growth markets, such as Brazil, Korea and Malaysia.

‘Northamptonshire Chamber is one of nine lead national Chambers chosen to participate in this Overseas Business Network’

It is creating a support network linking UK Chambers of Commerce with British Chambers and other business entities to complement export services being provided by UKTI.

Northamptonshire Chamber is one of nine lead national Chambers chosen to participate in this Overseas Business Network.

This seamless business-to-business initiative provides practical information on these markets, support and advice on the ground, as well as connecting UK businesses to in-country opportunities.

We are all working in partnership to ensure businesses are fully supported in their exporting goals. Now is as good as time as any to make those global ambitions a reality.

For more information about our International trade services please visit: http://www.northants-chamber.co.uk/membership/benefits/benefits-international

Details about Export Week, can be found by visiting: http://www.exportweek.ukti.gov.uk/full/

Information about the Overseas Business Network visit: www. exportbritain.org.uk

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