Post referendum considerations for local businesses highlighted at International Trade Club Breakfast meeting

Mandy Lockett, international business director of the East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce and Helen Cowley, Cassons’ director of tax, led a lively debate between members on the potential consequences and opportunities post EU referendum.

Referendum trade clubThey were speaking at the International Trade Club’s breakfast meeting which was attended by business leaders from across the region.

Helen summarised some of the possible tax implications of the UK’s departure and provided insight into some of the existing trade models used by other European countries.

Various business owners and representatives also shared feedback from their overseas customers.

Mandy Lockett elaborated afterwards: “The UK is a truly great country, and our businesses are more than capable of thriving and prospering on the world stage. It’s ‘business as usual’ and most of our members are busy making preparations to ensure they continue to trade with their European neighbours, close friends in North America and the Commonwealth, and their important partners based all over the globe including China and India.” The debate followed presentations from Gary Townley of the Intellectual Property Office, Jeremy Sidgwick, of What More UK Limited and Steve Cowles, from UK Export Finance.

Gary Townley spoke about the importance of businesses protecting their intellectual property, providing examples of how companies have successfully and (cost effectively) protected their brands in the UK and further afield.

Delegates also heard from Jeremy Sidgwick, International Sales Manager of What More UK Limited, who reflected on the company’s remarkable expansion, highlighting the successes and pitfalls of exporting its plastic houseware, gardening and storage products to customers globally.

Steve Cowles, from UK Export Finance, provided an update on trading with Iran, following the relaxation of economic and financial sanctions, and highlighted the support available to UK companies.

Carlton Cooper, partner at International Trade Club sponsors Cassons, said: “This was the latest in a series of regular events in which importers and exporters can develop their knowledge of current issues and share experiences with fellow members.

“I’m always delighted to see the level of support and camaraderie that exists between members. This month Brexit was a very hot topic and it was good for members to share their thoughts with fellow exporters and importers facing the same issues. The international business team will continue to invite guest speakers who can help to inform and advise especially during this post referendum transition period.”

The next International Trade Club breakfast meeting takes place at the Mercure Dunkenhalgh Hotel in Accrington on Thursday 6 October. The event starts at 8am and includes breakfast and an opportunity to network. One of the guest speakers will be from the International Chambers of Commerce, who represent business at all major international summits. They champion open cross border trade and investment, and strengthen commercial ties between all nations.