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East Midlands Chamber News

Export drive

Vince CableIn the week when the Chamber is making its final arrangements for the Midlands International Trade Expo and Conference - MITEC - Business Secretary Vince Cable has arrived in Russia to launch the biggest ever push to get companies exporting.

He is on a trade visit with over 30 British firms to boost the fast-growing economic links between the two countries.

Between 2009 and 2012, exports of goods and services to Russia have grown by over 75 per cent from £4.3bn to £7.6bn.

Vince Cable’s visit is part of Export Week which will be the biggest ever with 5,000 businesses expected to take part in events across the country as part of the Government’s ambition to raise the number of UK firms that export from a fifth to a quarter.

A new national campaign, Exporting is GREAT, will also start today targeting almost three million people with the ambition of generating 3,000 appointments with UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) Advisers and driving £1.2bn in export revenue from the leads it generates.

With businesses earning £100,000 on average in additional sales within 18 months of working with UKTI, there is significant growth potential for individual companies.

With over 600 companies due to attend Export Week events across the East Midlands this week, Sarah Stevenson, the East Midlands’ Acting Regional Director for UK Trade & Investment, said: “Exporting continues to be one of the biggest drivers for growth in the UK economy and our region boasts a strong tradition in manufacturing, creativity and innovation. There is a large appetite for our products and services overseas, which our local firms are taking advantage of.

“Through Export Week and the Exporting is GREAT campaign we hope to give firms a further boost to help them win orders overseas while strengthening our growing regional economy.”

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “British small and medium-sized businesses are the lifeblood of our economy. Many are doing incredible things and selling their services and products abroad. But too many do not realise their global potential.

“I am in Russia this week launching the biggest ever drive to encourage SMEs to export - Exporting is GREAT. This campaign will help us reach the many businesses across the country that are ready to export and grow but have yet to take the plunge.

“This can be a big step for many businesses and the Government's expert international trade advisers will guide companies every step of the way, with practical advice and support to find international customers.

“This week I am joined in Moscow by a delegation of over 30 fantastic British businesses across construction, manufacturing and retail sectors. British exports to Russia have almost tripled in the last ten years, with around 600 UK companies currently operating in the country. The opportunities here are huge for British business - that's why we're also investing in a $50m fund to help British small businesses export to Russia."

Speaking at the launch event for Exporting is GREAT in Birmingham, Trade & Investment Minister Lord Green said: “The Made in Britain brand is sought after across the world and many UK businesses are already taking advantage of this but we want more to follow.

“Through Export Week and the Exporting is GREAT campaign we will strengthen the momentum of the Prime Minister’s challenge.

“The UK’s future prosperity will not come from relying on domestic markets alone. Businesses excel with UKTI’s support and we want to make sure that UK firms are not just trading abroad but thriving there and competing with the best the rest of the world has to offer.”

In addition to the regional events held across the country a UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) roadshow will visit eight regions, including Nottingham, and feature more than 130 UKTI experts who will share their exporting experiences with companies. The roadshow will prepare UK companies to enter the global market, give advice on marketing to international clients and run workshops on the markets with the greatest potential for each region.

UKTI is also a partner in MITEC which takes place at Pride Park Stadium, Derby, on Friday.

Experienced exporters and importers, including some big-hitting entrepreneurs, will talk delegates through their own overseas trade experiences, over 20 firms will be exhibiting and more than 20 experts will be on hand to offer one-to-one counselling by appointment.

For more about MITEC, visit www.m-itec.co.uk.

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