Chancellor George Osborne has pledged to provide more support to exporters in the way companies are financed.
In his fifth Budget speech since the coalition party came into power, Osborne has increased lending available to £3 billion.
Speaking to the House, Osborne said, ‘For decades the British government has been the last port of call, when we should be backing British businesses wanting to sell abroad.
‘Today we fundamentally change that. And we’re going to start with the finance we provide our exporters.’
Alongside the doubling to £3 billion, Osborne also revealed that the interest rates charged on that lending will be cut by a third.
In a bold move, the chancellor declared that instead of having the least competitive export finance in Europe, we will have the most competitive.
In a Budget speech aimed at building a resilient economy, Osborne said it was for people who are a ‘maker, a doer or a saver’.
‘Our combined goods exports to Brazil, India and China have risen faster than those of our competitors,’ he added.
‘But we’re starting from a low base and we’ve got many lost years to catch up.’
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Conor Shaw, vice president general business and partner ecosystem at SAP, comments, ‘It’s promising to see more emphasis is being placed on encouraging businesses to become involved in the global economy, but it’s important for businesses to also invest and expand overseas to seek new markets, new talent and ultimately grow employment.
More so, beyond cost savings, SME owners themselves need to think differently about the way they run their business and focus their efforts on driving efficiencies through innovation.’
‘Exporting is an issue goes right to the heart of sustainable economic recovery,’ says John Spencer, UK CEO at Regus.
‘The fact is that businesses that export are more profitable on average than those that do not.
‘We are seeing a growing appetite among our customers, small and large, to sell products and services to non-EU markets, especially in the tech and digital sectors. The chancellor’s move to double export finance and cut interest rates by a third is a very welcome encouragement for firms to seize the opportunities presented by international trade.’