DHL / BCC: UK exporters expect business and prices increase

A report from DHL and the British Chambers of Commerce has shown that nearly half of UK (49%) exporting manufacturers and 39% of service exporters are set to increase their prices in the coming year, though a sizeable proportion expect business to grow.

The survey that used a sample of 2,600 also showed that 69% of manufacturers found exchange rates to be a cause of concern. 84% said that this is driving prices.

The BCC / DHL Trade Confidence Index, that measures the volume of trade documents issued by Accredited Chamber of Commerce for goods shipments outside the EU rose by 4.06% on the quarter, and stood 1.03% higher than in the same time last year.

Exporters however remain bullish – with 57% of them saying that turnover is set to improve in the next 12 months.

Hannah Essex, Co-executive director of policy at the British Chambers of Commerce, said: “These are uneasy times for many exporters concerned by persistent uncertainty around Brexit and future terms of trade with key partners. As we approach 29 March, so many questions remain unanswered and with the unwanted possibility of no deal still looming, businesses are preparing for the possibility of increased volatility.

Shannon Diett, VP of Marketing at DHL Express, said: “The increased trade confidence index, rising 4% on Q3 2018, indicates that despite the many difficulties, the resilience of British business remains, although businesses face pressure. This is in opposition to the Q3 results, which showed a decline on the previous quarter. There is also a very slight improvement year on year with an increase of 1% on Q4 2017. As the trade confidence index is a measure of trade outside of Europe, this indicates increased trade beyond the borders of the EU. We would encourage businesses to continue looking beyond Europe for opportunities, and ask the government to ensure trade deals are in place post Brexit to enable this successful trade to smoothly continue.

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