By Stuart Cooper and Inke Nyborg of the Bank’s Business Finance Division.
This article finds that effective access to focused advice and information is the most important enduring issue facing smaller exporters, especially those new to exporting. Access to finance does not appear currently to be a major difficulty for firms with some experience of exporting, though they may not be fully aware of all the alternative sources of finance. There is also some evidence that smaller exporters are less active than larger exporters in taking steps to manage their foreign exposure, possibly making them more vulnerable to the risks arising from fluctuations in foreign exchange rates and the failure of foreign buyers. The final section of the article notes the likely impact of the single currency on smaller exporters.