Hammond highlights growing importance of non-EU trade

Billy Bambrough
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UK Car Sales Up 8.6 Per Cent Year on Year
Honda Europe attended the talks, with car exports making up 2.4 per cent of UK GDP (Source: Getty)

Discussions between chancellor Philip Hammond and some of the UK’s biggest exporters focused yesterday on the growing importance of trade with non-EU countries.

Hammond hosted representatives from Honda, GlaxoSmithKline, Airbus, and Scotch Whisky Association at Downing Street.

UK exports have more than doubled over the last 17 years, with over half of total, making up 15 per cent of GDP flowing out of the European Union.

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Hammond is aiming to better engage with businesses ahead of the Autumn Statement in November.

Last week Hammond revealed the date for the first major fiscal event of Theresa May's government, with the Autumn Statement now set for 23 November.

Speaking in front of a House of Lords committee, Hammond said: "The Autumn Statement will set out the government's economic and fiscal plans based on the latest forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility.

"In the run up to the Autumn Statement I will be engaging with Britain's business leaders and employee representatives through a series of industry roundtables, meetings and visits, and of course, I will engage with parliamentary colleagues."

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The event will represent the new chancellor's first opportunity to show economic policy under May, and distinguish itself from the offerings of David Cameron and George Osborne.