Star comment: Exporting boom such good news

The can-do attitude of Shropshire businesses has rapidly become one of the county’s great success stories.

Inside the Aga plant in Coalbrookdale
Inside the Aga plant in Coalbrookdale

Many were fearful in the run-up to last summer’s Brexit vote, not sure what the post-referendum landscape would bring.

And even proponents of our departure from the EU could not have forecast the rapid nature of the fall in sterling. Yet business is booming for Shropshire companies that export as they have moved quickly to take advantage of a weak pound. Their clients around the world are shipping ever-greater volumes of goods as they make the most of goods that come with a comparatively low price and a reputation for high quality.

Businesses are not simply exporting to the traditional markets of Europe and the USA. Instead, they are looking further afield. And such countries as the UAE, Turkey, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, India and Egypt are now regular recipients of goods manufactured here in Shropshire.

It is remarkable in a global economy where countries like China and India are viewed as being almost impossible to compete with that Shropshire is, in fact, winning an export war.

The activities of local companies do not simply reflect an opportunistic approach to business and economies. Local firms are taking a strategic view as they look to play the long game. They are exploring new opportunities around the world so they are well-placed to benefit in a post-Brexit age.

Their foresight is remarkably important to the region’s economy as they look to prevent the much-feared cliff edge scenario, which may or may not come to pass two years from now.

The lower value of the pound is not good news for all, of course, and those looking to jet off for sunshine holidays this Easter will have been surprised at how little they can afford. Yet such inconvenience might be viewed as a small price to pay for a burgeoning economy. And, perhaps, if foreign holidays prove too expensive, some might consider the merits of staycationing this year, an idea that provides further economic benefit to the UK.

The prevailing attitude from industry in Shropshire and Mid Wales is that – whether they agree with Brexit or not – now is the time to just get on with things and, if possible, make hay while the sun is shining. Certainly that appears to be the case.

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Comments for: "Star comment: Exporting boom such good news"

Watchdog

Well! There's a report that you won't read about in the Guardian!

PJS

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2017/jan/25/uk-manufacturers-weak-pound-exports-cbi-sterling-brexit

Looks like you're wrong Watchdog. Perhaps you should look up from your Mail/Expess/Sun from time to time. You might get a more balanced view.

PJS

'even proponents of our departure from the EU could not have forecast the rapid nature of the fall in sterling'

What a ridiculous comment. A significant drop in the value of sterling was widely and accurately predicted in the event of a 'leave' vote. It'll fall yet further when we actually leave.

Don't forget too that the price of imported goods will also rise (inflation is now on the rise). The price of oil, traded in dollars, will also inevitably go up as sterling falls. And when a the 'hard' Brexit that the Tories are pressing for brings tariffs to our export costs the supposed boom in exports will quickly grind to a halt.

jim jams

You should have Mark Carney's job, you are both as bad as each other.

PJS

Perhaps you need to learn a little about how exchange rates work and the effect they have on economies...

jim jams

Perhaps you need to have a bit more faith in this country , such a miserable life must be draining for you.

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