An economic survey of the first three months of the year, carried out by the Black Country Chamber of Commerce, found continuing confidence in both the manufacturing and service sectors.
Unveiling the survey results, at the Park Inn, West Bromwich, Johnathan Dudley, chairman of The Alliance for the Black Country, pointed out that availability of cash was becoming more important to many manufacturing businesses in the region than the availability of skilled people.
Commenting on export figures, he said: “Export sales have dropped 5 points nationally and 19 points across the West Midlands since the end of 2014. In the Black Country export sales have risen 7 points and orders have risen 21 points. Although it is too early to tell if this is a trend, it is reassuring that the encouragement we are giving to local businesses to explore new markets is paying off.”