Are exports up in spite of or because of Brexit?

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eu-giftFastlane International have totted up this year’s shipments and revealed that their regular retail customers shipped over 25% more gifts to EU countries this Christmas compared to Christmas 2015.

The low value of the pound made UK purchases very tempting and long-term e-commerce retailers said they noticed a sizeable increase in the number of international visitors to their sites from people paying in sterling to take advantage of the low exchange rate.

The strong upturn in online purchases of UK gifts by EU and international consumers wasn’t restricted to Fastlane’s own retail and online marketplace traders. ASOS reported a whopping 50% jump in international sales over Christmas and the international accounting specialists BDO there was online sales growth for December of 19.0%, A significant percentage of this increase was from overseas buyers.

The trend was repeated on the High Street as international tourists spent 22% more on foreign bank cards in UK High Street stores this year. So called ‘Brexit tourists’ were worth £725 million to UK shops in the build-up to Christmas – £130 million more than last December. The amount spent by French and German tourists alone over the holiday period was up 14%.

There’s no doubt that this is due in part to the attractive cost of UK products for EU and international consumers, because of the low value of the pound. Ironically the Brexit vote has increased trade with our EU neighbours in the short term, by pushing down the value of sterling.

With sterling showing no signs of rallying against the Euro and Dollar and having just dipped below $1.20, British goods will remain attractively priced to customers in the EU and around the world for the foreseeable future. The only thing that may put a dent in the bonanza for retailers will be as they start to raise prices due to the increased cost of importing stock or raw materials from overseas.

3 Responses

  1. Yep, I had a significant lift in my overseas sales (mainly buyers from the USA). Fingers crossed it continues.

  2. I had a noticeable increase in orders from Italy – trouble is, they all seemed to end in “Item not received” cases, even the ones sent Tracked!! Needless to say, Ebay sided with the buyer (even the one who left +ve feedback?)
    I do not sell to Italy now.

  3. The short term exuberance of this article is baffling.

    I’m not a UK seller, not even in the EU, but we’ve divested ourselves of UK service providers as we’re no longer certain they’re going to survive brexit.

    The British Pound’s fall means that the cost of inventory from the EU and non-UK supply chains (which is most) will rise. The UK’s pending ejection from the common market and EU’s customs union, as well as the ending of all trade deals with other countries made for you by the EU, will mean increased import duties and regulatory barriers on practically all goods going in and out of the UK to all destinations. The status of the UK’s Post-brexit WTO status is even unclear. It will take years, if not decades to negotiate, ratify and enact new legislation for a country that doesn’t even have a division for that in your foreign ministry, or whatever you call it.

    Personally, your nationalistic act of suicide makes me less sympathetic to the plight of your country. But as a seller, I’m looking forward to less UK competition for EU buyers, which remains our largest market that the UK has turned it’s nose up at.

    Oh, you should also know that we’re not ‘lining up’ to sign a trade deal with the UK. We’re 100% indifferent. We find it funny hearing the arrogant noises coming from the UK, thinking the world cares. We don’t.


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