Times have changed and they are still changing. Markets were volatile before the UK’s Brexit vote. They are even more so in the aftermath. The question now becomes one of how we regain a sense of economic composure. If the vacuum left by the referendum result is not to be completely filled with turbulence, how does the UK move forward internationally? And, as this is our prime focus here, what next for exporters?
A New Age of Exploration?
“What is the message that we have sent out to the world with the referendum result? There is a negative implication we cannot ignore”, suggests Chris. “It suggests we’re planning to pull up the drawbridge and cease to have an external-facing perspective. However, exporting successfully has to be about looking outwards”.
“If leaving the EU means that the imperative to find alternative markets is that much stronger, then this has to be seen as an opportunity for exporters”
Chris Houghton, Freedom Logistics
To explore unchartered territory is always a challenge, and as such, exporting to new markets will require hard work, persistence and resilience. Are exporters up to the challenge? For many, there may not be a choice. If it is a case of sink or swim, then exporters must set out for new markets as boldly as they can.
Independence, Trade and Communication
“International trade needs some kind of a framework, but within this there has to be a freedom for manoeuverability. If we end up no longer operating within the EU’s framework, we must seek new agreements and new ways of trading overseas”, Chris continues. “If we find ourselves newly independent then we must find a way to use this to our advantage”.
The old rules may no longer apply and while uncertainty undermines confidence, it also can become the basis for opportunity, and it is this aspect of change that exporters need to remind themselves of.
“Finally, it’s worth reiterating the point that good trade is about communication and openness. It is designed to open up the world, not close it down. Whatever you think of the referendum result, and however challenging the times we live in become, we must continue to project ourselves positively to the outside world. To emphasise that independent thinking triumphs over close-mindedness”, concludes Chris.
For exporters, one chapter ends and another begins, and it is up to them to influence how it is written.
Export Experts Magazine appreciate Chris Houghton‘s contribution to this ever-changing debate.