Importance of global trade to small firms to be highlighted

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Importance of global trade to small firms to be highlighted (image credit: iStock/Bet_Noire)

The issue of global trade and its importance to small businesses in the UK is to be on the agenda at an upcoming event.

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) is staging a session at the International Festival of Business later this month, entitled "From Northern Powerhouse to Global Markets - Small Firms and the Global Trade Agenda".

Taking place at the Exhibition Centre in Liverpool, the FSB will unveil the findings from a new report outlining what challenges small businesses face when they are trying to export to foreign markets.

The organisation believes overcoming these obstacles is vital if small businesses are to secure more customers and boost their profitability and turnover.

Furthermore, the FSB argues that getting more small firms exporting will help to close the UK's trade gap, which it says will enhance the national economy's long-term prospects.

Sajid Javid, the business secretary, will be one of the main speakers at the event on June 20th.

Mike Cherry, chairman of the FSB, said his attendance "shows the importance that government attaches to the FSB's exports agenda, to get smaller firms export-ready".

"We hope the day's discussions will help highlight the barriers which hinder many small businesses’ ambitions to export and provide solutions to make that journey easier," he commented.

Mr Javid added that the future of the UK's exports, its economy and the success of the Northern Powerhouse initiative all lie in the hands of small businesses.

"That’s why the government is totally committed to helping more of Britain’s small businesses to start operating on the global stage," he said.

"Our Exporting Is GREAT campaign is making it easier than ever for businesses of all shapes and sizes to identify and exploit export opportunities all around the world."

Mr Javid went on to stress that the event in Liverpool will help to break down the barriers between government and business, as well as "introduce more employers to the benefits of doing business internationally".

The business secretary is one prominent name in an extensive line-up, as other figures speaking at the event and taking part in panels will include Fred Perry, deputy director of volume strategy at UK Trade and Investment, and David Bailey, professor of industrial strategy at Aston Business School.

Frank McDonald, professor of international business at the University of Liverpool School of Management and shadow small business minister Bill Esterson will also be in attendance, among others.

The event will be hosted by BBC North West political editor Arif Ansari.