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UK trade is cause for concern, says ParcelHero

[ April 14, 2021   //   ]

The latest UK trade figures, which showed a £65bn fall in the value of British exports in February, make grim reading, says broker. ParcelHero. It says PM Boris Johnson’s claim that his deal will leave Britain ‘prosperous and dynamic and contented’ looks increasingly far-fetched.
Head of consumer research, David Jinks described the figures as “extremely concerning”. The -18.3% year collapse in exports highlights the impact Brexit is having on the UK economy.
He added: “It is encouraging that British exports did struggle upwards 9.9% in February compared to the previous month, January 2021. However, that is setting the bar exceedingly low, given that January’s exports were, by far, the worst ever recorded. The £3.7bn (46.6%) monthly uptick in exports to the EU in February looks a positive headline figure, but keep in mind they had fallen by an eye-watering £5.6bn in January. There’s still a lot of trade to claw back.”
February’s exports to non-EU countries actually fell by -10.5% compared to the previous month. “How non-EU exports could fall by £1.5bn against January’s terrible results beggars belief,” said Jinks.
The Government can no longer claim that the latest trade results are due to a temporary, post-Christmas dip or stockpiling, as it did for January’s figures – the numbers are clear proof of the impact of Brexit, he argued, adding: “When Boris Johnson signed his Brexit deal with the EU on 24 December, he claimed Britain would be ‘prosperous and dynamic and contented’. So far, UK exporters look less prosperous, far from dynamic and increasingly discontented. British businesses continue to wrestle with increased customs tariffs, border delays and rising transport costs.
“Our fear is that there could be even worse to come. Let’s not forget that some of the most complex, new EU border regulations have been postponed, unilaterally, by the UK Government. What their impact might be on these already worrying trade figures when they are eventually imposed, only time will tell.