UK Trade and Investment says exports have fallen in region

The Advertiser Series: David Coppock, UK Trade and Investment regional director David Coppock, UK Trade and Investment regional director

THE Netherlands continues to buy more North-East goods than anywhere else in the world, but total exports from the region have fallen again.

New figures from HM Revenue and Customs say the value of exports fell from £3.031bn to £2.939bn between July and September.

The Netherlands remains the largest single market for North-East goods, with £1.531bn exported in the 12 months up to September.

Bosses added exports to nine of the region's top 20 markets grew in the last 12 months, with South Korea seeing an increase of £29m, Turkey rising by £150m, and Sweden increasing by £73m.

Thailand was the region’s fastest growing market with an increase of £376m, helped by Teesside-based SSI UK, which sends steel slab to the country.

However, there were falls in road vehicle exports, pharmaceutical and power machinery exports.

David Coppock, UK Trade and Investment regional director, said while it was disappointing exports had decreased, the annual total was still higher than the period at the start of the recession.

He said: “It is disappointing the figures have again shown a fall, but the fact remains that the annual total of £12.346bn still remains more than £1bn higher than the period immediately following the beginning of the recession through to 2010, when it was £11.338bn.

“Certain sectors such as iron and steel are showing signs of strong growth and we have seen increases in exports to several overseas markets including Thailand, South Korea and Turkey.

“We cannot afford to be complacent and we need to continue to focus on the opportunities that overseas markets can offer and UKTI is committed to helping companies realise their potential.”

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