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The Sponsors Alliance

For most of the last 10 years UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) and now the Department for International Trade has changed from a major supporter of UK industry to one that is almost invisible, unsupportive and at times damaging.

During 2012 to 2013 a significant investment in Tradeshow Access Programme support had lead to a huge increase in SMEs starting to export and going in to new markets.

In October 2014 UKTI decided to cut support to the Tradeshow Access Programme (this programme gives grants to new and new to market SME exporters) mid year, breaking agreements arranged a year previously. This caused the cancellation, where possible, to UK groups exhibiting overseas, financial hardship to companies and some ATO's.

In 2016 UKTI delayed the release of support to companies for the Tradeshow Access Programme for the 2016/17 financial year. This reduced the number of events and size, where UK groups were present at overseas exhibitions.
The new Department for International Trade has carried on where UKTI left off, again delaying - even further this time - the announcement of support for 2017/18 and then cutting the number of grants available to companies to 6 (from 12).
2018 has seen yet further delays and cuts to the number of grants.

Sponsors Alliance members reprent many sectors accross the UK (see member list) and in turn they help their members to export through overseas market information, UK organised groups at overseas exhibitions, providing advice and mentoring.

We take UK companies to export opportunities through exhibitions, missions, market research and general advice.

If the UK economy is to rebalanced and continue to grow it's exports, the govenment must deliver a consistant and were appropriate, properly funded, stratgery to encourage companies to export.

The Sponsors Alliance believes a funded Tradeshow Access Programme, that compares with our EU competitors, will significantly help SMEs to achieve this.

If you support the Sponsors Alliance position and wish to comment, please email the the Sponsors Alliance using the form below:-





The International Trade committee is holding an enquiry into support for exports and investment, following on from the Business, Innovation and Skills Committee's 2016 inquiry into Exports and the role of UKTI.

The Committee is particularly interested in the following:

What progress have International Trade and Investment (ITI, formerly UKTI) and UK Export Finance (UKEF) made on their performance since the Business, Innovation and Skills Committee finished work on its inquiry in 2016?
How has the absorption of UKTI into the new Department for International Trade affected its performance?
Are the Department for International Trade's export and investment services fit for purpose and sufficiently resourced?
In the light of the Secretary of State's admission that 1 trillion export target will not be met, are the Department's export and investment targets transparent, appropriate and achievable? How should the performance of ITI and UKEF be measures?
What standard of advice do ITI and its International Trade Advisers provide?
What standard of support does UK Export Finance provide to companies seeking to export?

The Sponsors Alliance continues to battle for a nationally run and properly supported export support scheme that includes an export trade fair scheme.

While our European and International competitors benefit from support far in excess of their British counterparts, we ask, will our government help or hinder exporters.

The Sponsors Alliance 2015 manifesto - Driving UK exports

Lobby your MP or join the Sponsors Alliance

The more we lobby MPs, the more notice they will take.
Ask the questions we have put (or some of your own).

If you would like to join the Sponsors Alliance, please download and return the application form below or contact us by email via the contact page

Sponsors Alliance application form

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