International Trade Secretary Liam Fox has told businesses in Lincolnshire and the rest of the UK that he wants access to open markets across the whole of the world, not just inside the European Union.
Dr Fox was given a guided tour of the Lindum Group headquarters in North Hykeham as part of his visit to the county to promote Conservative Party candidate Caroline Johnson’s bid to become the next MP for Sleaford and North Hykeham.
He told Lincolnshire Business that it was not a question of which countries the UK negotiated trade deals with, but how open the global economy was.
He said: “At the moment, we’re actually seeing trade as a proportion of global activity shrinking for the first time since 9/11.
“We’ve got to ensure we’ve got more open markets. This is still a part of the country that still does a lot of exporting including in heavy machinery.
“We’re standing here in a business park where 40% of those who are based here actually export which is much higher than the UK average.
“We want to have as open a trading relationship as we can with the whole of the world, not just Europe. Our exports to Europe now only make up around 40% of our total exports.
“Our big increase in markets are outside the European Union at the present time. Our job is to make sure we have the best access for UK companies to that growing part of the global market.”