Only one in five SMEs involved in exports - survey

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Only 19% of Hungarian small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) export their products, according to a survey published yesterday, commissioned by Budapest Bank and carried out by market researcher GfK, according to state news wire MTI.

There are few newcomers among exporters: the survey found that exporting SMEs have been selling their products abroad for an average of 14 years, with two-thirds having already entered foreign markets more than a decade ago.

MTI notes that there is little sign of the group of exporters growing as only 4% of SMEs in the survey were open to the idea, while 77% said they would stick to the domestic market.

Around 57% of companies said their products are not suitable for export, while 27% said their company is too small to get involved.

Most SMEs involved in exports do so to neighboring or nearby countries including Austria, Romania, Slovakia and Germany. Just 10% of exporters sell their products outside of the European Union, according to the survey.

Among larger companies with more than HUF 700 million annual revenues, the proportion of exporters is higher than the average 19%, standing at 42%. Among companies with annual revenues below HUF 200 mln, on the other hand, the proportion is just 17%.

For SMEs with higher revenues, exports accounted for 44% of sales, above the 26% average share among all exporting companies, the survey found.

The telephone-based, computer-assisted survey was conducted in May-June 2017, involving 500 Hungarian-owned companies with annual revenues not exceeding HUF 10 billion.

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