12 November 2013

On a trade visit in Russia with over 30 British companies, Business Secretary Vince Cable has urged small businesses across the UK to take advantage of the possibilities on offer during Export Week (11 to 15 November).

This will be the biggest ever push by UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) with almost 100 events taking place at the start of a national campaign targeting 700,000 firms. "Exporting is GREAT" will aim to generate 3000 appointments with UKTI advisors.

The Week forms part of the Government’s plan to raise the number of UK firms that export from a fifth to a quarter.

Dr Cable said: "British small and medium-sized businesses are the lifeblood of our economy. Many are doing incredible things and selling their services and products abroad. But too many do not realise their global potential."

He accepted that trying to make sales abroad can be a big step for many businesses but emphasised that the Government’s expert international trade advisors will be available to guide companies through the processes, with practical advice and support to find international customers.

The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) announced that it was joining forces with UKTI to promote Export Week. It also announced the launch of Export Britain — an online resource to help businesses find connections in new markets overseas.

BCC President Nora Senior said: "Chambers of Commerce are here to support firms every step of the way, to help them make in-roads and connections in new countries and provide practical assistance such as training and export documentation."

From Paul Clarke, business writer for Croner