Press release

FCO and UKTI welcome NAO report supporting UK exporters

FCO and UKTI are supporting UK prosperity and growth by helping British business to export more overseas.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Today, the National Audit Office (NAO) published its report on “Supporting UK exporters overseas”. It examines how the FCO and UKTI are helping British business overseas.

Minister of State at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Hugo Swire said:

The NAO report sets out what the FCO and UKTI are doing to meet the Government’s ambition to double UK exports to £1 trillion by 2020, as part of our broader determination to refocus our efforts towards growth.

We believe that the FCO has a vital role in helping British business to succeed in the global race, from supporting our exporters overseas to pressing for open markets around the world. The report highlights steps we have already taken, from targeting more resources at priority markets, to increasing commercial training for staff.

But there is always more we can do, and we welcome recommendations as to how we might improve our performance. We will be looking closely at these and working with UKTI to deliver the best possible contribution to British export success.

Lord Green, Minister of State for Trade and Investment, said:

The NAO’s report highlights the key role UKTI and the FCO are playing in helping more British businesses to export and the results are coming through already. Since 2010 exports to China have increased by 91% and exports to Russia are up by 118%.

We are working hard to achieve our ambition of doubling exports to £1 trillion and getting 100,000 more UK companies exporting by shifting the focus of our staff, working in the UK and in embassies around the world, towards targeting high-value opportunities.

We are also providing more support and advice for UK small and medium sized businesses by establishing a global business network and opening British Business Centres in key markets across the world including India, China and UAE.

However we want to go even further and UKTI will work with the Foreign Office to implement the report’s recommendations.

Further information

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Published 16 October 2013