Express carrier TNT is offering a significant discount to new customers exporting to nine European countries, as part of a push to encourage the growth of international sales within Europe.
The company is offering a 20% discount to companies if they export shipments of up to 250kg countries such as the UK, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Italy. Existing customers will also benefit from a reduction if they start to export items to a new destination in Europe’s densest business region.
The company said 70% of goods being exported within Europe are sent to countries within this area, called the “Blue Banana” zone.
“TNT’s initiative will encourage European SMEs to look beyond their domestic markets,” said Ian Clough, managing director for TNT International Europe.
While a recent study found that just 1% of UK business leaders support an exit from the EU, many companies are struggling to develop relationships with their peers on the continent, as some European companies are concerned over the fallout of a possible Brexit.
While last year 15% of member SMEs told the FPB that they planned to begin exporting overseas, that number has now dropped to 9%. Meanwhile, 58% of companies that were exploring overseas opportunities have now decided to focus their energies on domestic customers – making the government’s target of hitting £1 trillion in exports by 2020 look increasingly unlikely.