By Daniel Hunter

UK businesses are jingling all the way after helping to spread Christmas cheer across the world, with overseas sales of Christmas trees doubling.

Christmas trees grown in the UK are sold nearly exclusively in the UK, but growers are increasingly bucking the trend. Taking on their European rivals, during the festive season last year they saw an increase in sales overseas of 111% for October to December 2013 compared to the previous year.

Meanwhile children across the world continue to write to Father Christmas asking for British toys, with UK toy manufacturers reporting a 25% increase in exports for October to December 2013. This is an increase of over £25 million compared to the same period in 2012 and, with a 17% increase in unit toy sales for 2014 so far, is set to grow further still this year.

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “From toys to trees to all the Christmas trimmings, the UK has proved time and again that we produce the items of choice for people celebrating the festive season across the globe.

“It’s particularly good to see British firms branching out into new markets, selling Christmas trees in Russia, chestnuts to Spain and toys to Angola.

“Looking ahead to 2015, we want to help British businesses not just sell abroad, but thrive there. UK Trade & Investment stands ready to help and this year supported almost 48,000 companies do just that. Any company wanting to know more should get in touch.”

According to retail sales data from market researchers The NPD Group, revenue from sales of toys since January has increased by 6% compared to the same time period last year - the best sales result since 2010.

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