By Siddharth Shankar
China has long been seen as a land of opportunity by UK businesses. We have enjoyed an increasingly strong trading relationship with the country for many years. However, as the IMF announces that it is downgrading its all-important growth forecasts for the Chinese economy, will China continue to grow in importance as an export destination for UK goods or will other markets –such as India – prove to hold greater potential?
New figures released last month by the Office for National Statistics show that Asia as a whole is becoming increasingly important to UK trade. Many of the fastest-growing export markets for the UK are in Asia. UK business has seen a whopping 40% growth in exports to Taiwan, 19% to India and 17% to Thailand. India is a particularly exciting market for the UK due to its sheer size. So how do the two market’s potentials compare?
China is the world’s second largest economy. Ever since the country began to adopt free-market principles in 1978 it has been going from strength to strength. In recent years UK-China trade relations have been blooming. Last February Teresa May and the Chinese Premier agreed a new trade and investment review but the UK’s exports to China have been increasing steadily since 1999, when China was the UK’s 26th largest export market, compared to 2017 when it became the UK’s sixth largest export market. In the year to March 2018 UK exports to China grew by 15.3%.
However, the IMF recently…