Export-led recovery ‘a pipe dream’, says Close Bros barometer

Exportship300An export-led recovery a pipe dream for UK manufacturing firms, according to a poll conducted by the finance firm Close Brothers.

Close Brothers Business Barometer, a quarterly survey of SMEs across the UK, suggests that he majority of UK manufacturing firms do not sell their goods or services overseas, dashing any hopes that exports might lift the UK “out of the current economic mire”.

Almost two thirds of manufacturing businesses polled said they did not export, mainly because of cash flow concerns and because “businesses simply think they have nothing to export”.

Steve Gee, managing director of the Manufacturing Division at Close Brothers Asset Finance, said: “Manufacturing firms must be more active in seeking and exploiting opportunities overseas. Even companies that are well positioned to export often do not.

“We need to understand the barriers – perceived or otherwise, take measures to lower those barriers for manufacturers, and make exporting a possibility for them once again.”

This material is protected by copyright Ken Hurst 2013.


About Ken Hurst

Ken Hurst began his career as a journalist in London over 30 years ago, working on a range of publications before moving on to weekly newspaper production in the newly-independent Zambia of the 1970s. He returned to the UK where his work included spells on newspapers and magazines, before moving to head up Norwich Union’s corporate affairs division. In the 1990s he moved on to freelance, co-own and publish the B2B audio magazine Sound and front the BBC radio Yesterday’s Papers programme. There followed six years as Business Editor at Britain’s biggest selling regional daily newspaper, The Eastern Daily Press, where he led an award-winning team and for whom he still writes a weekly socio/political comment column. Subsequently, he was Group Editorial Director at CBM, responsible for its UK and US magazine output – including The Manufacturer magazine – research-driven industry reports and live events content. Currently he is Contributing Editor at Works Management magazine publisher Findlay Media and Chairman of the consumer publishing house TNT Multimedia Ltd. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and of the British Association of Communicators in Business.
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