UKEF helps exporters achieve £644m in overseas sales

Government-backed finance and insurance helped UK manufacturers achieve a total of £644m in overseas sales in 2017-18, according to the latest annual UK Export Finance (UKEF) report and accounts.

Carpenter & Paterson is a specialist pipe suspension equipment manufacturer based in Welshpool – image courtesy of Carpenter & Paterson.
Carpenter & Paterson is a specialist pipe suspension equipment manufacturer based in Welshpool – image courtesy of Carpenter & Paterson.

Companies supported by UKEF included Carpenter and Paterson, a specialist manufacturer of pipe suspension equipment.

By providing a £300m line of credit and working with overseas buyer Reliance India, UKEF helped to ensure more than 100 construction and supply contracts on Reliance’s project in Jamnagar India went to UK companies, including Carpenter and Paterson which secured US$9m worth of business.

Managing director of Carpenter and Paterson, Jonathan Lee commented: “The business we won with Reliance resulted in an increase of more than 50% in our revenue, which may not have happened without UKEF’s involvement.”

This year, UKEF provided £2.5bn of support for UK exporters. This helped 191 companies sell to 75 markets around the world, 77% of which were small and medium-sized businesses.

UKEF was also awarded ‘best export credit agency 2017’ by Global Trade Review magazine and Euromoney’s Trade Finance.

Dr Liam Fox MP, Secretary of State for International Trade, said: “As an international economic department, our priority is to do all we can to support UK businesses as they seize the opportunities of global trade.

“UK Export Finance is at the heart of our offer to help them do so, and this report shows that it has been a landmark year for the UK’s award-winning export credit agency.”

Baroness Fairhead, Minister of State for Trade and Export Promotion commented: “UKEF’s results for 2017-18 once again show that when companies take advantage of its support, the effects on their business can be transformative.

“By providing innovative and flexible finance and insurance, the government is helping British businesses, big and small, realise the value they bring to the international marketplace.

“The range of exports supported by UKEF demonstrates that the UK’s exporters have a truly world-class export credit agency behind them – and that’s why the government’s forthcoming Export Strategy will deliver on our commitment to put UKEF at the heart of trade promotion.”

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Last year, UKEF implemented a more proactive approach to bringing business to the UK, securing at least $250m of UK exports to two power plant projects in Iraq at one of its flagship supplier fair events.

UKEF also more than doubled the amount it lent directly to overseas buyers to help them buy UK goods and services, giving UK businesses an exporting edge in the global marketplace.

For smaller businesses, UKEF improved access to its support through a pioneering partnership with the five high street banks and by widening eligibility for its short-term trade finance products to include direct suppliers to UK exporters.

The results show that UKEF has supported £4.1bn in export contracts through its trade finance products since 2011, which were introduced to help smaller businesses to export.