Hundreds of Scottish businesses set to benefit as UK Government invests in new roles to boost exporting

  • UK Government’s Department for Business and Trade announces the introduction of DBT International Trade Advisors (ITAs) to Scotland.
  • Once introduced a further 600-900 businesses are expected to benefit from one-to-one advice and guidance on how to start exporting.
  • The new roles will double the number of the Department’s trade and investment staff in Scotland.

THE Department for Business and Trade (DBT) will significantly expand the support on offer to Scottish businesses after it announced that new DBT International Trade Advisors are to be hired north of the border.

Once in place, the new Advisors will be responsible for providing tailored, one-to-one guidance and support to Scottish businesses to help them start or expand their exporting journey.

The new resource is intended to complement existing services by expanding the pipeline of exporting companies and should see a further 600-900 companies in Scotland receive help.

Exports Minister Lord Offord was in Greenock today at the former Customs House to begin stakeholder engagement on the structure of the ITA support. While there he hosted a roundtable with SMEs about their exporting journey so far, and discussed how more companies might be encouraged to export using such support.

UK Government Minister for Scotland and Exports Lord Malcolm Offord said:

“This is a significant investment by the UK Government to provide further support to businesses across Scotland.

“Working closely with colleagues at SDI and the Scottish Government, this should significantly increase the capacity of our team to support increased exporting through expanding the pipeline of companies.

“We know what a huge difference accessing international markets can make to a company, and I’m looking forward to continuing the discussions that were started today to ensure as many businesses as possible take advantage of the opportunities that are out there.”

DBT officials have worked closely with Scottish Government and Scottish Development International officials in shaping the proposals, which are now subject to an eight-week public engagement exercise.

The engagement exercise is aimed at ensuring the new resource is implemented in a way that meets the needs of Scottish businesses and is complementary to services already offered by SDI and others.

The new DBT ITAs will sit alongside other UK Government support services such as the UK Export Academy which offers free training to businesses on selling abroad, and UK Export Finance who can provide attractive financing terms and working capital loans to companies.

The introduction of International Trade Advisors is a significant step in supporting the Department’s goal to reach £1 trillion worth of exports annually by 2030. Boosting the number of exporters in Scotland will be crucial in reaching this target, with survey responses showing there were around 14,800 Scottish companies exporting goods or services in 2021.

Research into the benefits of exporting have shown it to be essential in helping businesses to grow, with those that do trade abroad often having increased productivity, and offering higher wages to their staff.

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