British online merchants are expected to export a record £153 million worth of goods this Christmas to online buyers all over the world, according the latest data from eBay.
Between the end of October, to the middle of December, eBay merchants in the UK will ship fashion, electronics and collectibles items to markets as far afield as the U.S. and Australia (38% of UK exports last year), and closer to home to Italy, France and Germany (34% of UK exports). While exports to China and Hong Kong are lower, they are expected to import some of the most expensive items during this period, including tablet computers, smartphones, and British fashion brands.
Data from eBay last year shows that Christmas sales to overseas buyers begin to ramp up from 27th October, marking the start of the Christmas ‘exporting window’ for UK sellers. The busiest online shopping period for exporters is during the first week of December but most cross border trade deals are wrapped up by December 15th.
Murray Lambell, Director of International Trade, eBay in the UK, said: “Cross border trade on eBay.co.uk is expected to grow from £127m last Christmas to £153m this year, representing a massive economic opportunity for the UK. British businesses should ensure they are ready from the end of October to take full advantage of the Christmas ‘export window’ and the significant global demand for UK brands and products. With the ability to reach over 152 million shoppers around the world 24/7, there is no better time than now to gear up for international market.”
Just a reminder to any eBay sellers to keep an eye on their sales turnover during the Christmas period in any of the EU countries. The EU distance selling VAT rules apply – so once over the set thresholds – €35,000 (or equivalent) in most EU countries except in France, Germany, Netherlands and Luxembourg – where it is €100,000 (or equivalent), they will need to VAT register there, apply the local VAT rate and file the VAT returns in the country/ies where the VAT registration is. This shouldn’t put them off though – if they have to register it means their sales are doing really well!
I wonder how much of this stuff being exported is actually manufactured in the UK? I’m willing to bet the vast majority came from overseas in the first place.
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