10 UK Export News You Might’ve Missed – Week 24

week 24

In this edition of Export News from Expordite, we’ll cover the top 10 UK export news and headlines from week 24 of 2024 — June 10th-16th 2024.

Key News

General Export News

1. Operation Ancord – Multiple seizures of veterinary products

Enforcement officers from the VMD participated in Operation Ancord organised by the FDA and Border Force at Heathrow Worldwide Distribution Centre and Coventry Airport.

Packages containing veterinary products that are not authorised for importation and administration in the USA were identified as being exported from several UK addresses.

The products were seized under Regulation 31 (Exports) of the Veterinary Medicines Regulations 2013. This regulation states that no person may export a veterinary medicinal product for use in another country unless that product may be lawfully supplied or administered there.

Source: GOV.uk

2. UK publishes general export licensing statistics & Israel-specific information

“The UK has published the strategic export controls commentary for 1 October to 31 December 2023, outlining statistics on licence application decisions of the ECJU, including that 2842 standard individual export licences were issued and 154 were refused and  70 open individual export licences were issued and 12 were rejected.

The UK also published an ad-hoc management information release on export licences to Israel, outlining that as at 31 May 2024 345 export control licences to Israel were extant and 185 licence applications were in progress, and between 7 October 2023 and 31 May 2024, 108 licence applications were issued and 2 were rejected.”

Source: Global Sanctions

3. Post-Brexit Reliance on US Service Exports Deepens UK Economic Inequality

This week, in yet another setback to Rishi Sunak‘s efforts to showcase how the Conservatives have created – over a decade and a half – a robust economy, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) reported that monthly growth in April in the UK had flatlined.

The British economy was said to be struggling with a faltering retail sector, a decline in manufacturing, and a reduction in construction output, after a 0.4% rise in March. The City’s pundits appeared to blame the weather and not the cost-of-living crisis for the lack of growth. The consequences of Brexit, as it seems to be so increasingly, was absent from the finger-pointing.

But this news of the parlous state of the British economy comes amidst more of the same. The UK’s labour productivity had increased by just 0.4% annually over the 12 years following the financial crisis – half the average growth rate seen in the 25 wealthiest OECD countries – and has resulted in a cumulative loss of £10,700 in wage growth for the average worker’s annual salary.”

Source: Byline Times

4. Goods Imports Up And Exports Down In April

Goods import volumes (excluding inflation) rose by 7.8% in April, with similar increases for both the EU and the rest of the world. Imports from the EU rose by 7.7% (£1.6bn). This was led by rises in machinery and transport equipment, and food. Non-EU imports volumes rose by 7.9% (£1.3bn) driven by higher miscellaneous manufactured goods and fuels.

Goods export volumes fell by 2.8%. For the EU, they fell by 1.4% (£0.2bn), after adjustment for inflation – the main decline being in crude oil sales to Germany. Non-EU goods exports volumes fell by 4% (£0.5bn), driven by chemicals exports. This was offset to some degree by higher fuel, machinery and transport equipment exports.

Source: Liverpool Chamber

5. Waste-export row as shipping firm accused of favouritism

DFDS shares a director with the UK’s biggest exporter of waste and concerns have been raised that gives the company an unfair advantage over the rest of the sector.

Source: ENDS Waste & Bioenergy

6. As exports decline, what’s going wrong in the UK food trade?

The Conservative Party received another glut of bad news last week when first-quarter food & drink trade stats showed UK exports plummeted more than 20% compared with the same three-month period in 2023.

This is not only far from the post-Brexit industry revival promised by ministers, but terrible PR for the Tories. The figures published by the Food & Drink Federation represent the lowest Q1 volume shift in the past 15 years, barring an “exceptional” period in 2021 at the height of the pandemic.

Most concerningly, exports to the EU, by far our biggest market, dropped of 5.8% from £3.5bn to £3.3bn. This was driven by lesser demand across “several significant EU markets”, the FDF said, including Ireland, the UK’s most important export market, and other crucial countries like Spain (down a hefty 33.3%), the Netherlands (down 13.3%) and Belgium (down 11.3%).

The Q1 2024 numbers, jarring as they may be, are just a continuation of a decline in trade seen in recent years. Traders sending their goods to the bloc have been met with costly paperwork and checks since the EU introduced controls back in 2021, which has put off many from even doing business with the continent (the sentiment is mutual among EU importers). That, paired with lesser consumer demand due to the cost of living crisis, makes the perfect recipe for disaster.

Source: The Grocer

7. What the UK seafood industry wants from its next government

As the United Kingdom prepares to elect a new government on July 4, the country’s seafood industry is making its case for additional funding and the easing of trade restrictions with the European Union and beyond.

Fish processors are calling on the next administration to continue funding development of a skilled workforce, while producers of Scottish salmon – the UK’s biggest food export by value – are seeking better trade relations and “a more enlightened approach” to the movement of migrant workers.

Source: IntraFish

8. Let’s drink to opportunities – Jennifer Talbot

With the general election coming soon, minds turn to the years ahead and how to ensure the continued growth of the economy. On Friday 5 July, as we toast the successful party, the Scotch whisky industry will hope they commit to investment and support.

As underscored in the recent election manifesto produced by the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA), the industry presents important benefits and opportunities to the Scottish and UK economies.

The SWA says the sector contributes £7.1 billion to the UK economy annually. Scotch whisky accounts for 26 per cent of UK food and drink exports, a figure that rises to 77 per cent in Scotland, with 1.35 billion bottles exported in 2023 (or 43 bottles every second). Crucially, the global consumption of Scotch whisky supports 66,000 jobs in the UK – 41,000 of which are in Scotland, many in rural areas where the industry is the principal source of employment. The SWA reports that with exports of £1.8bn in 2023, Asia Pacific is the most valuable export region, with standout growth in China. The United States remains the largest export destination, buoyed by mutual suspension of tariffs on the trade of single malt Scotch whisky and Bourbon and American whiskey until June 2026. A priority growth market is India, with hopes that a trade agreement is on the horizon.

Source: The Scotsman

9. UK overtakes China as India’s fourth-largest export market in May

The United Kingdom (UK) has overtaken China to become India’s fourth-largest export market in May, commerce department data showed. The UK was India’s sixth-largest export destination in May last year.

While exports to the UK grew by a third to $1.37 billion in May, the shipments to China saw 3 per cent growth at $1.33 billion last month.

Source: Business Standard

10. UK red meat exporters look to rising demand for animal protein

Global opportunities for UK red meat exporters amid rising demand for animal protein have come under the spotlight at a major industry conference.

Delegates at the annual Red Meat Exports Conference heard about positive worldwide trends and patterns in trade production, as well as risks and challenges.

It comes as global demand for animal protein is growing, with pig meat, beef, and sheep meat consumption expected to rise by 11%, 10% and 15 % respectively by 2032.

Red meat exports from the UK last year were valued at £1.7 billion, equalling the record year in 2022, according to official figures.

Source: Farming UK

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