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NIGERIA AND INDIA BECOME THE FASTEST GROWING EXPORT MARKETS FOR UK GOODS 

  • Analysis of ONS export data shows that the fastest growing export markets for UK goods in 2018 were Nigeria (up 27%) and India (up 24%)
  • The largest export destination country for UK goods remains the US – worth £55 billion to the UK in 2018
  • Overall UK export growth slows to just 2% in 2018 following 11% growth in 2017 

Nigeria and India were the top two fastest growing export destinations for UK goods in 2018, according to analysis1 by Santander Corporate & Commercial of the latest ONS export data. UK exports to Nigeria grew by 27% last year to £1.63 billion, while those to India were up 24% to £5.52 billion.

The analysis, which looks at the top 50 goods export markets, shows that the top 10 fastest growing markets in 2018 were predominantly made up of non-European Union countries. Alongside Nigeria and India, Thailand (up 19% to £1.55 billion), Taiwan (up 18% to £1.37 billion), and Canada (up 13% to £6.09 billion) were all in the top 10. Greece was the fastest growing European market for importing UK goods, and ranked third overall (up 21% to 1.07 billion).

John Carroll, Head of International, Santander Corporate & Commercial, said: “It’s exciting to see British companies embracing new international trade opportunities, not just with established trading superpowers like the US, Germany and Japan but also in evolving markets such as India and Nigeria. Taking the leap into a new and less traditional market can seem daunting at first, but we know that companies who trade internationally often have stronger growth prospects and are more resilient against economic uncertainty at home.”

The UK exported £350 billion in goods in 2018, up 3% versus 2017, and £279 billion in services, up 0.2%. Overall, the UK’s total exports (goods and services) for 2018 were up 2% from the previous year to an all-time high of £629 billion. However, year-on-year growth has slowed when compared to the previous year’s growth from 2016 to 2017 at 11%.2

Regionally, exports of UK goods to the whole of Europe (including EU countries) were up by 3% compared to 8% in North America and 5% in Asia-Pacific. Asia-Pacific is now bigger than North America (£63 billion vs. £61 billion) in terms of export values for UK goods.

Santander UK has bolstered its engagement with India in recent years, signing a memorandum of understanding with Yes Bank, India’s fourth largest private sector bank, in 2017 and leading a delegation of food and drink businesses to India last year.

Gautam Sehgal, India Alliances Director, Santander UK said: “India is a thriving market with a strong rate of economic growth. Its drive towards infrastructure expansion is well reflected in a 65% rise in exports of electrical energy infrastructure from the UK in 2018 alone. The data also shows a significant increase in automotive, advanced engineering and medical sector exports – industries which are considered major contributors to UK job creation and GDP. As the world’s fastest growing economy, India is a key international trading partner as the UK looks to expand its global connections.”

Recent Trailblazers research by Santander Corporate & Commercial3 found that high growth businesses still see the European Union as presenting the greatest opportunity for international growth. Nearly a third (31%) plan to increase sales in the EU over the coming year, with North America the second most popular region for international expansion (27%).

Helping businesses to export is a core priority for Santander, drawing on Banco Santander’s presence in 10 core markets such as the US, Brazil and Mexico as well as alliance partnerships with other banks in countries like France, China, Singapore and India.

Santander supports companies throughout their exporting journey, helping them to identify potential opportunities, running trade missions to connect businesses with new customers and suppliers, and introducing business to the services they need when setting up internationally.

Largest region by export value (within the top 50), for UK goods, in 2018
Region Value, £million Percentage growth from 2017
Europe 189,213 3%
of which European Union 167,883 4%
Asia & Pacific 63,037 5%
North America 61,082 8%
Arab States 16,038 -13%
South/Latin America 4,289 2%
Africa 3,746 3%
     
Top 10 export destinations for UK goods in 2018, by value
Country Value £million Percentage change from 2017
United States 54,991 7%
Germany 36,053 -3%
Netherlands 25,760 17%
France 24,412 1%
Ireland 22,188 9%
China 18,579 3%
Belgium 14,534 4%
Italy 10,732 4%
Spain 10,413 1%
Hong Kong 8,318 5%

 

Top 10 fastest growing export destinations (within the top 50) for UK goods, over one year
Country Value, £million Percentage change from 2017
Nigeria 1,634 27%
India 5,524 24%
Greece 1,066 21%
Thailand 1,545 19%
Taiwan 1,370 18%
Netherlands 25,760 17%
Norway 3,639 13%
Canada 6,091 13%
Japan 7,032 10%
Ireland 22,188 9%

 

Source: Santander UK analysis of ONS Top 50 UK export data, 2018

 

 

Breakdown of UK goods exports to Nigeria
Nigeria 2016 2017 2018 2017-18% Difference % of 2018’s Total Exports
Residues and waste from the food industries 754,116 3,450,112 6,546,146 90% 0%
Mineral fuels, mineral oils and products of their distillation 162,099,501 317,701,267 598,642,220 88% 45%
Cotton 14,997,548 15,393,260 25,303,763 64% 2%
Beverages, spirits and vinegar 14,753,268 12,647,520 17,466,629 38% 1%
Miscellaneous edible preparations 6,584,387 13,932,429 16,882,607 21% 1%
Vehicles other than railway or tramway rolling-stock 41,689,960 45,209,613 53,372,868 18% 4%
Ships, boats and floating structures 6,591,757 6,862,228 8,021,575 17% 1%
Essential oils; perfumery, cosmetic or toilet preparations 28,812,262 28,489,817 32,576,824 14% 2%
Textile articles; sets; worn clothing and worn textile articles; rag 26,048,226 33,001,183 36,873,568 12% 3%
Pharmaceutical products 27,376,352 39,410,601 38,002,094 -4% 3%

 

Breakdown of UK goods exports to India
India 2018 2017-18% Difference
Gems and Jewellery $900m 300%
Electrical/gas turbines $81m 300%
Measuring instruments $61m 53%
Aluminium Scrap $280m 51%
Cars $50m 13%
Scientific instruments $55m 11%
Electrical machinery $91m 11%
Alcohol $200m 9%
Automotive vehicle parts $80m 0%
Aircraft parts $90m -9%
Iron waste & scrap $186m -21%
Aircraft parts $90m -9%

 

Breakdown of UK goods exports to Greece
Greece 2016 2017 2018 2017-18% Difference % of 2018’s Total Exports
Ships, boats and floating structures 2,526,926 3,713,247 27,472,671 640% 2%
Mineral fuels, mineral oils and products 53,455,608 45,517,546 157,959,993 247% 14%
Iron and steel 9,197,289 10,439,129 31,190,446 199% 3%
Copper and articles thereof 6,991,986 6,321,331 11,257,257 78% 1%
Plastics and plastic products 20,260,010 25,423,734 35,242,266 39% 3%
Nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery and mechanical appliances 64,351,144 68,007,894 83,103,657 22% 7%
Aluminium and articles thereof 13,540,695 18,824,748 22,964,643 22% 2%
Essential oils and resinoids; perfumery, cosmetic or toilet 18,734,840 23,792,968 28,513,681 20% 2%
Optical, photographic, cinematographic, measuring, checking, precision, medical or surgical instruments 26,221,347 32,433,537 33,637,394 4% 3%
Soaps, organic surface-active agents, washing preparations, lubricating preparations, artificial waxes, candles 9,262,580 19,769,347 20,464,257 4% 2%

 

 

The information contained in our press releases is intended solely for information and should not be used by consumers to make financial decisions.

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