25/02/2009

NI Concrete Firm Looks To Netherlands

A Ballymena concrete firm had its sights set on Europe while on a recent visit to the Netherlands with NI Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster.

Moore Concrete Products Ltd, which supplies precast concrete products to the agricultural, civil and building industries, sought to use the Invest NI trade mission to carry out market research and gain rights to manufacture precast concrete products.

Ms Foster said: "In this challenging economic climate, Northern Ireland businesses must combine their focus on day-to-day survival with their medium-to-longer term priorities."
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The Minister said the Netherlands is an attractive market for firms in the concrete sector, due to the regions manufacturing potential.

"Our businesses must look outside of home and seek to increase new sales in export markets," she said.

Ms Foster suggested greater focus should be placed on increasing the value added to products and services and developing innovative sales and marketing techniques.

"Improvements in competitiveness and quality, combined with the opportunities offered by the sterling exchange rate, can also help companies beat the worst effects of the global slowdown," said the Minister.

"There is much past success to build on, as customers in The Netherlands purchased goods worth £145m in 2007/08; 10% of our total exports to markets in continental Europe," added Ms Foster.

(PR/BMcC)

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