Exporters stand firm, despite austerity measures

London - 12 January 2011

British exporters are confident that exports can make a large contribution to the UK’s economic growth in 2011, according to the latest Travelex Confidence Index released today. An impressive 65% said they thought their export activity would grow in 2011. David Sear, Global Managing Director at Travelex Global Business Payments said “exporters are central to the UK’s growth hopes in 2011 – and they know it.”

The report comes days after Prime Minister David Cameron stressed the importance of trade to the UK economy, telling the country’s business leaders to “sell Britain – British exports and Britain as a place for investment.”

Despite the impending ‘age of austerity’, the Travelex Confidence Index showed that exporters remained upbeat in December, with 59% expressing confidence in current economic conditions. They clearly rejected the likelihood of a double dip recession, as 75% were confident that economic growth would be sustained in 2011.

The Index also highlighted the growing pessimism of British importers, driven by fears over weakening domestic demand. Less than half (48%) of British importers showed confidence in current economic conditions. Importers’ optimism in future trade also fell to a four month low.

Mr. Sear commented: “At the moment, Britain’s trade community is divided into two camps; exporters who are confident that they can drive economic growth, and importers who are concerned about the impact the VAT hike will have on consumer spending. The hope is that any economic growth provided by rising exports will improve British consumer confidence, encouraging them to spend once again. This in turn should improve the sentiment of UK importers.”

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