Brexit Britain’s exports reach record high

USA continues to be UK’s biggest export market – by a long way


© Brexit Facts4EU.Org - larger, clickable version is below / Rt Hon Dr Liam Fox negotiating in the USA

Mr Corbyn, before you snub a state dinner with the US President again, please read this

Yesterday the BBC reported that: “Dramatic fall in car output hits UK economy.” (This didn’t stop UK from growing again in the last quarter, but this wasn’t headline news.) What the BBC failed to report were the latest official ONS figures released yesterday, showing that British exports reached a new record high in the last 12 months.

The BBC failed to report the jump in exports in their main news on their website. They failed to report it in their Business News. And they even failed to report it in their Global Trade section.

Accordingly, Brexit Facts4EU.Org are bringing readers a summary of the good news.

Brexit Summary

Latest export figures up to April 2019

  • UK exports of goods and services in the 12 months to April 2019 increased by 4.0% to £645.8 billion
  • Goods exports worldwide increased by 4.7% to £356.6 billion
  • Goods exports to the USA increased by 11.9% to £57.6 billion, largest increase for any major partner
  • Total trade between the UK and USA in 2018 was worth £190.5 billion

This chart shows the UK’s top 3 goods export markets in 2018 (excluding the latest figures for Q1 2019)

© Brexit Facts4EU.Org - click to enlarge

Note: Technically the Netherlands comes third, just ahead of France, but these figures are distorted by the fact that a great deal of UK exports to the world pass through Rotterdam and other Dutch ports first. They are then simply trans-shipped globally, but are bizarrely still recorded as being exports to the Netherlands.

US demand was the strongest driver of UK export growth in the 12 months to April 2019

As readers can see in the chart above, the USA dwarfs Germany and France in terms of how much it buys from the UK. This is yet another sign of the special relationship following the US State Visit last week.

Liam Fox’s Dept for International trade summed things up well:-

“Overall, British goods exports to the world over the past year increased by £16 billion. The US was by far the largest contributor of any single country to this increase, with British exports to our closest trading partner increasing by £6.1 billion - accounting for 38.4% of the total increase in value of British goods exports.

“In terms of both goods and services, in 2018, the USA was by far the UKs biggest export market. The UK was the USA’s largest European export market.”

“Everyday around 1 million Americans work for British companies in America, whilst around 1 million Britons do the same for American companies in the UK.”


British companies sell to other companies in countries around the world, including those countries which are in the EU. What is so often misunderstood is that British companies do not “sell to the EU”. They sell to companies (and consumers) in other countries. And the USA is the biggest buyer of UK goods, buying almost as much as Germany and France combined.

For many businesses, the first consideration is where there is a ready market for their goods, not whether that country is in the EU or not, and their first consideration is not whether tariffs exist or not. They go where the demand is.

As newly-elected Brexit Party MEP and businessman Lance Forman put it to our editor in an interview before the EU elections:

“You look for customers where you think there’s a market for your product. If your country happens to have a trade deal with that country – brilliant. It comes in handy when you export. But it doesn’t mean that’s where you start.”

These facts are important

We would like to think that the facts we’ve brought you above are important. Not only is the USA the UK’s top customer by a long way, it is also the fastest-growing major overseas market at a time when the Eurozone’s economy is stuttering.

We find it unacceptable that the BBC, the state-funded broadcaster – did not find any room for this important story yesterday. They were able to find room for negative stories about car manufacturing figures, but not about record UK export figures.

Politicians of all hues are forever talking about trade in relation to the Customs Union and the Single Market, so this information is highly relevant to Brexit. Of course, the vast majority of our readers voted Leave on the basis of democracy and sovereignty, not trade, but as politicians witter on all the time about the Customs Union, we believe that this information is important to report.

We will leave readers with an uplifting quote yesterday from the Rt Hon Dr Liam Fox MP:-

“I encourage exporters right across the country to use today’s statistics as evidence that despite global headwinds, the most prosperous countries in the world are demanding British goods at unprecedented levels.”

- The Rt Hon Dr Liam Fox MP, Secretary of State for International Trade, 10 June 2019

[ Sources: Office for National Statistics, latest trade figures | The Dept for International Trade ] Note: Politicians and jouranlists are welcome to contact us for details.

Brexit Facts4EU.Org, 11 June 2019

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