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Food and drink exports 'essential' to UK economy

By Dan Colombini , 28-Mar-2012
Last updated on 28-Mar-2012 at 09:32 GMT2012-03-28T09:32:20Z

Food and drink exports from the UK will play a vital part in the UK’s economic recovery, according to agriculture minister Jim Paice, after it was revealed that exports topped the £12bn barrier last year.

Speaking at the Foodex exhibition in Birmingham, Paice told that the industry was an “essential” part of the UK economy and praised the sector for its continued export growth in 2011.

But he also warned that, despite the achievement, manufacturers, both small and large, had more work to do if the UK was to further build on its recovery from tough economic times.

Paice pointed toward the government's export action plan, which was launched in January, as a way for firms to utilise help to increase trade overseas.

Increase trade overseas

He also highlighted the role of UK Trade and Investment in helping manufacturers contact potential export markets for the future.

Also featured in the video are Paice’s thoughts on how small to medium-sized businesses (SMEs) can become more competitive and government’s plans to tackle soaring energy costs.

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