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Brexit and the UK Printing Industry
With a turnover of £13.8 billion (2016) and employing around 116,000 people in 8,400 companies, the UK printing sector is an important economic contributor and employer in all UK regions. The UK is the fifth largest printing county in the world (after USA, China, Japan and Germany). But what has Brexit got to do with the UK Printing Industry?
Trade in Printed Products
Printed matter contributed £775 million to the UK's balance of trade in 2016. Approximately 50% of exports are to the EU – £1.4bn of £2.9bn. Whilst only 35% of imports are from EU - £0.8bn of £2.2bn. Almost all of the positive trade balance is as a result of EU trade. It is worth noting that in many cases it is not the printer that is doing the exporting - but the clients they are printing for. However, this trade is important – much of it is to Ireland (a particularly important market for companies based in Northern Ireland) but there are also very significant exports to the rest of Europe and further afield to the USA.