'More help needed' for businesses that export, says West Midlands Mayor Andy Street

Fri 29 Jul 2022
Posted by: Phillip Adnett
Trade News

Andy Street calls for more support for exporters

West Midlands Mayor Andy Street has called for more help for exporters, and for the process of exporting to be made easier, in a BBC interview this week.

Speaking on Radio 4’s PM programme on Wednesday (27 July), the Conservative Party mayor told BBC presenter Evan Davis that help for exporters was needed as there had been “some consequences” on business in his region as a result of Brexit.

Street is familiar with the world of international trade, having previously served as managing director of retailer John Lewis from 2007-2016, receiving a CBE for “services to economic growth” in 2015.

More exporter support

In the BBC interview, Street said: “we do have to deal with the whole issue of how easy it is to export, that’s paper work, the physical movement … it’s also the support for business to export, so that is definitely an issue.”

Calling the West Midland’s export performance to non-EU markets “relatively good”, Street went on to say “we do need to acknowledge there has been a change in our terms of trade”, The Independent reports.

“Of course that’s difficult for business to negotiate and we’ve got to help them through that to rebuild our position.”


When asked about the business communities’ reaction to Brexit, Street said: “business is telling me there are some consequences and if you look at this region, our deterioration in the export performance is definitely partly to do with Brexit.”

“Partly it’s to do with global supply chains as well, but I’m not being naive about that - that’s what I hear from businesses day after day.”


In his interview, Street also stated that outgoing prime minister Boris Johnson’s levelling up agenda was something “both [Tory leadership] candidates have to stick by”. 

Trade secretary Liz Truss pledged “urgent action” on regional growth, whilst her rival, former chancellor Rishi Sunak, gave "an unequivocal massive yes" to the policy, according to ChronicleLive.