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Asian countries dominate the UK’s fastest growing export partners

23rd Apr 18 7:50 am

Study finds

New research, commissioned by Wyelands Bank, reveals the UK’s fastest growing export partners are dominated by countries in Asia Pacific with three in the top five. Europe and the Middle East also rank with one each. 

Rank (fastest growing)   Country    Growth rate a year to 2021    Value in 2017 (US$)   Project growth (value US$)  
1   Switzerland    3.6 per cent   $23.6bn   $850m  
2   China    3.6 per cent   $24.6bn   $886m  
3   Saudi Arabia    2.9 per cent   $7.8bn   $226m  
4   Hong Kong    1.2 per cent   $9.1bn   $109m  
5   South Korea    1.1 per cent   $5.9bn   $65m  
Total            $71bn   $2.1bn   

Exports to these five countries were worth US$71bn last year. The projected growth means that these markets could generate an extra US$2.1bn a year for UK exports.  

Wyelands Bank, set up to help small and medium sized businesses, commissioned the research to better understand the role of imports and exports in the UK economy. It was prepared in collaboration with Global Trade Review, the leading trade and trade finance media company, which has provided the data. 

Regional growth from Asia Pac and South America

Regionally, Europe remains the UK’s biggest trading partner for exports with a 46.3 per cent share. North America is next with 17.2 per cent, while Asia Pacific (7 per cent), Sub-Saharan Africa (5.4 per cent), Mena (1.8 per cent) and South America (1.2 per cent) follow. 

However, the fastest growing market is Asia Pacific, where exports are expected to grow at 3 per cent a year to 2021. South America, where UK exports are expected to grow by around 0.5 per cent annually until 2021, is the second fastest growth region. 

Iain Hunter, CEO of Wyelands Bank, said: “Behind these headline economic figures, trade is important because it creates jobs. It has helped to contribute to the UK’s record employment levels, providing financial security for millions of families up and down the country. 

“However, in order for businesses to succeed, they need working capital. It is only by providing better access to funding that we can support businesses to trade, grow and create jobs.” 

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