Trade statistics highlight severity of decline in West Midlands exports during recession

HM Revenue & CustomsThe latest UK Regional Trade Estimates released by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC), show that the total value of goods exported from the West Midlands decreased by 12.5% to £14,352 million in the 12 months to June 2009, compared to the 12 months to June 2008.

The West Midlands recorded the largest decrease in exports of any English region over the one year period. Statistics for individual quarters indicate that the low point of the recession so far was recorded in Q1 2009, when the total value of exports from the West Midlands was estimated at £2,998m (down from £3,893m in Q4 2008).

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West Midlands: Fit for the Future?

West Midlands: Fit for the Future? Cover ArtOn 21st July, from 5pm to 7pm, the Observatory is holding a short drinks reception in central Birmingham to launch our book, “West Midlands: Fit for the Future?”

The book comprises ten chapters, written by ten different authors, reflecting their personal views on how the region can best place itself in readiness for the economic upturn, as well as highlighting any potential obstacles.

Our ultimate aim is to stimulate debate, promote discussion and influence policy on the future growth of the region. The focus is on the future prosperity of the West Midlands, rather than on the effects of the recession, exploring the region’s ability to maximise its potential as we move out of the downturn.

At our annual conference on 20th October 2009, delegates will be encouraged to discuss and debate the issues raised in the book, and help develop an evidence-based action plan for the region.

If you would be interested in attending the launch event, please email or call 0121 202 3250.