New financial package launched to help SMEs bounce back

A new package of measures from the government has been announced in England to help industries recover from the pandemic.

The Department for International Trade’s (DIT) Export Growth Plan provides additional financial support and expertise, some of which is targeted towards specific regions that are most in need.

The plan includes a £38 million internationalisation fund for small businesses, which will help up to 7,600 SMEs in England grow overseas trading and strengthen their businesses.

Additional support for exporters will be provided by 64 new International Trade Advisors (ITAs), many of them working closely with Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs), who will lend their expertise to small businesses in the Northern Powerhouse, Midlands Engine and South West.

A new pilot export academy will also be introduced to support smaller businesses in the same areas. The academy will deliver a series of activities to build the capabilities of smaller companies, creating a new cohort of confident businesses ready to trade.

Minister for exports, Graham Stuart said: “The government is negotiating trade deals around the world and we are determined to help UK businesses take advantage of the markets we are opening. So, as part of the recovery from coronavirus, I am delighted to announce this funding and support, which will be invaluable to businesses looking to begin or continue their exporting journeys.

“In 2019 we overtook France to become the world’s fifth largest exporter and this package is a statement of our confidence in UK companies to grow the UK as an exporting superpower. The package will ensure businesses are supported from the start, with more funding, more Trade Advisors and the establishment of the Export Academy to help businesses build back better.

“As we continue to negotiate improved trading terms with leading countries around the world, it is important to ensure every business can reap the benefits of our free trade agreements.”

Department for International Trade www.gov.uk/dit

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