EY: Future success of UK exports lies outside the EU

19 November 2014 Consultancy.uk 2 min. read

The vast majority of UK entrepreneurs believes that they will have to look outside the EU to grow their exports, concludes a survey of EY. The government should encourage companies to grow, not only in the UK but also internationally by cutting red tape and investing in infrastructure.

Professional services firm EY recently executed a survey among 226 entrepreneurs to assess how their firms performed in the last years and if they expect growth in the future. EY also aimed at gathering views on factors that can help or hinder this growth. Entrepreneurs surveyed came from multiple sectors and regions of the UK with well-established businesses, with 73% running their business for at least a decade.

The survey shows that the vast majority of UK entrepreneurs, 83%, feel that the future success of UK export lies outside the EU. Stuart Watson, EY’s Entrepreneur of The Year UK Leader, explains: “Europe has been and will continue to be the UK’s biggest trading partner, yet the UK’s entrepreneurs can see a clear opportunity to grow their business outside the EU in the coming years. Businesses intending to scale up through export growth should make sure that they look out for opportunities beyond the EU.”

EY survey among UK entrepreneurs

Government action
In its survey the consulting firm asked the entrepreneurs what the next UK Government could do to make growing a business easier. Cutting red tape was mentioned by 29% of the respondents, followed by reviewing the existing regulatory framework (27%) that restricts growth, cutting business taxes (20%), and executing a radical reform (17%).* Almost half of the entrepreneurs believe that the future success of UK exports relies on more support from the Government, and two-thirds feel that this success could be ensured through more investment in UK infrastructure by the Government.

“The UK needs to make it easier for entrepreneurs to do business and grow, not just in the UK, but internationally. Entrepreneurs regard red tape and regulation as both a cost and that which slows down growth. Supporting dynamic businesses to scale up particularly through exports is key to the future prosperity of the UK. We need to make sure we nurture them in every way possible,” concludes Watson.

* A recent research executed by KPMG shows similar results: 71% of SMEs that the firm surveyed stated they would like the UK Government to execute the following initiatives: red tape reductions (36%), cuts to business rates (31%) and greater tax relief (28%).