Whilst the UK economy is facing challenges at home and aboard the service sector will be the main driver of Britain’s recovery, whilst the manufacturing sector continues to struggle. However as many firms have maintained their skill base and with further support during the recovery, particularly for exporters, the manufacturing sector will gradually continue to rise.
However findings from BCC’s recent skills gap report, cited that gaps around knowing how to take a product to market is holding back potential exporters.
We believe commercial export skills should be central to business education, and help guide entrepreneurs through essential areas of managing finances, cross border supply chains, understanding legal and bureaucratic requirements. The survey also found language skills will be critical to the success of exporters, and currently very few speak the language of their buyer sufficient to do a deal.
Whilst French remains the most commonly spoken language, of 5000 businesses interviewed only 5% had technical French language skills. As the UK continues to drive up exports, and reduce the balance of payments deficit, this is going to be more of a problem. In faster growing markets such as China and Russia, 95% of businesses have no skills in these languages, and yet according to an IMF forecast China will grow by an estimated 7.75% and Russia by 3.4% (IMF)
There is a real need to heighten the importance of languages in the curriculum and skills agenda, and create the next generation of business leaders to be born global, and for businesses to have more incentives to train staff in languages relevant for their International trade.
The Chamber movement has been going for over 200 years, providing businesses with practical support, access to knowledge, skills and encouraging exports through our export seminars, workshops and export documentation and translations services.
For help and advice on export seminars, Country awareness and export documentation please email firstname.lastname@example.org