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International Trade and Export

Export advice

Exporting can be a great way to grow your business. By opening new markets, you can improve profitability and spread risk. However, fewer than 30% of smaller companies in the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain export. Obstacles include HR constraints, lack of information about international markets, cumbersome administrative processes, limited access to investment capital and difficulties in finding business partners abroad.

However, there is extensive advice and support to help businesses overcome these barriers and take advantages of the international opportunities available. First time exporters and experienced exporters looking to grow sales or access new markets can access a range of free Growth Hub and Government services.

Support to start exporting

Exporting can be a hugely fulfilling business strategy, and there is plenty of help available for ambitious Berkshire businesses.

If you fulfil the high growth criteria detailed here, the Growth Hub can help you to assess, prepare for and take advantage of opportunities. We can also aid you in attending international trade fairs, communicating your offer overseas or mentor you in logistics and finances as part of the High Growth service.

Support to grow your international trade 

Whether you are an experienced exporter looking to break into new markets or a first-time exporter, the Growth Hub will help you. Check our services page here for details of our two types of support. If you are eligible for our High Growth support, register using the form and we’ll be in touch.

Government support available to businesses wishing to export

The Government is committed to aiding exporters and provides significant assistance through the Department for International Trade (formerly UK Trade & Investment). The following links may be of use to you.

  • Department for International Trade (was UKTI) for the full range of services available.
  • Exporting is GREAT – the website of the UK’s exporting campaign.
  • China-Britain Business Council – an innovative diagnostic tool for British businesses to assess their export readiness for China 
  • Benefits of exporting – advice on basic considerations of selling overseas.
  • Importing & exporting – for a basic overview of importing and exporting, including exchange rates.
  • Exporting food – guidance from the Food Standards Agency.
  • New guides available for British businesses interested in selling goods and services to GermanyFranceUSAChinaIndia. See also Brexit advice section below.  
  • The Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce Group also provides a number of export and trade services, further details of which can be found here.

Importing goods or services

If you are looking to import products or services, this page will help you understand what you will need to do to get underway.

Brexit advice and support for businesses

For guidance and information regarding exporting, importing and preparing for the UK exiting the EU, businesses can call the DIT South East enquiry line on 0330 300 012, submit an EU Exit enquiry form, email or visit this website

HMRC issues EORI numbers: Every business will need an EORI number to move goods into or out of the EU after Brexit. HMRC is sending letters to all possible VAT-registered businesses to advise them of their assigned UK EORI number. If your business is not VAT-registered, you still need to register for an EORI number here.

UK/EU Border: Importing and Exporting

The Border Delivery Group and HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) have also published a series of short videos and leaflets to help businesses prepare for changes at the UK/EU border in a ‘no deal’ scenario. The videos are all available here.

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