UK sells more outside EU than inside for first time since 1970s

THE EU is no longer the UK’s main export market, according to research published today by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR).

The three months to May 2012 registered a sea-change in British trade, with non-EU exports of goods exceeding those to the union by 1.5 per cent – the first time they have done so for a whole quarter since the early 1970s, according to CEBR.

This reordering from the same three months in 2011, when EU members bought 19 per cent more UK exports than non-members, comes from a 7.3 per cent fall in exports to the EU and a 13.2 per cent rise in goods going elsewhere.

CEBR believes these figures could in fact overstate EU countries’ importance, since indirect port transfers distort the numbers.

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