Foreword from Her Majesty's Ambassador to the People's Republic of China, Dame Barbara Woodward DCMG OBE

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IMG_9824 HM Ambassador CROPAs economies become more inter-connected and digital, the potential for British business to find new customers in overseas markets is greater than ever before. Exports not only help businesses to grow, they help build the foundation for a healthy economy. As noted in the UK’s recently launched Industrial Strategy, exporting businesses account for 60% of the UK’s annual productivity growth and deliver stronger employment growth.

We must help more British businesses export more: especially to China, the world’s second largest and fastest growing economy. China is hungry for quality British goods and services. UK exports to China have surged by over 60% since 2010, making China the UK’s largest export destination outside of Europe and North America. Chinese demand can be felt throughout the UK – already, 26% of UK goods exports to China come from the West Midlands, 13% from the North West, and 12% from Scotland.

There is no one model for engagement with China: businesses of all sizes can succeed with a suitably designed approach. E-commerce is at the fore in China today. Chinese shoppers spent a world-beating $550 billion online in 2016. This presents exciting new ways to sell to China like online store fronts and cross border e-commerce. Some of these new methods may be particularly exciting to British SMEs who employ some 60% of the UK’s work force.

Please consider all the information in this guide to prepare you for entering the market. Define your strategy, identify your partners and utilise organisations such as the Department for International Trade and China-Britain Business Council who are here to support you and prepare you for China, the market of great opportunity for UK exports.


Dame Barbara Woodward DCMG OBE
Her Majesty's Ambassador to the People's Republic of China


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