Record export figures

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EXPORTS from the North East have grown to a record high during the last 12 months, according to new figures.

It is thought the boost has been driven by strong growth at Nissan and the region’s strong engineering industry.

Overseas sales from the region also seem likely to continue growing after hitting another growth spurt to a record £3.6billion in the first quarter of this year.

The North East was one of only three regions in the country to show growth in the UK this year and the growth here contrasts with a 2.5 per cent drop nationally over the January to March period.

The latest figures from HM Revenue & Customs show that exports from the region rose to hit a record £13.75billion in the 12 months to the end of March.

The value of exports was 7.5 per cent on the same period a year ago in this region, only slightly behind the national average increase of 8.6 per cent.

David Coppock, UK Trade & Investment regional director said: “The region has enjoyed another excellent export performance this quarter – our highest recorded – and the total for the past 12 months is again at a record level for the region.”

Car manufacturing still makes up the largest share of the region’s exports, with the continuing success of Nissan in Washington leading the industry’s overseas sales up 23 per cent to £5.4billion. The plant now employs more than 6,200 workers.