While most clothes on Britain’s high streets are made beyond our shores, our clothing is being shipped overseas faster than a model faceplanting on a runway, if Office for National Statistics data is anything to go by.
Clothing exports rose almost 16% to £5.2bn in 2013, according to number crunching of ONS stats by Santander UK, while car exports revved up 13% over the year to £24.7bn. Meanwhile, shipments of the rather interestingly categorised toilet and cleansing preparations climbed 9.5% to £5.3bn.
A few industries dominate our exports, though. Machinery (mechanical and electrical), cars and pharmaceuticals accounted for 37% of the total in 2013, with a combined value of £113bn. With oil they made up half of the country’s exports.
Total export growth was rather more sluggish, though, creeping up 2.3% in 2013. That’s got to speed up if the government wants to have any chance of hitting yearly exports of £1tn by 2020.