Minister’s praise for the region

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A GOVERNMENT minister has praised North-East businesses after making his first visit to the region since his appointment.

Trade and Investment Minister Lord Ian Livingston reiterated his support for small and medium-sized businesses as he met entrepreneurs and business leaders.

He kicked off his tour by joining the celebrations of the region’s exporting prowess at the North East Exporters’ Awards.

After that, he met with representatives of organisations, including the North East Chamber of Commerce, the local enterprise partnership Tees Valley Unlimited and local businesses.

His aim was to hear first-hand the experiences of companies currently looking to export, and to encourage businesses to work with UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) and UK Export Finance (UKEF).

Lord Livingston said: “Increasing the number of UK businesses that sell overseas is a key part of the Government’s long-term economic plan to build a stronger, more competitive economy and research has shown time and again that companies do better when they export.”

He added: “Many North-East firms are already reaping the rewards of exporting and have contributed to the region’s economic success, with more than £11.5 billion of exports in the last year.”

For more information about support services available through UK Trade & Investment, call the North East International Trade hotline on 0845 05 05 054 or email enquiries@uktinortheast.org.uk.