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For every 1 invested in the TAP scheme, 40 comes back to the country in taxable revenue. Since 2013, the scheme value across all industries has shrunk from 20m to an estimated 6m in 2019. As our country prepares to leave the EU, our largest trading partner by far, we should be doing more, not less, to support our exporters to reach new markets. Uniquely, government has control over the funding needed to make a success our our country's export strategy.

Whilst the TAP scheme survives, and the Sponsors' Alliance enjoys good relations with DIT, direct export support to companies is chronically underfunded and schemes like TAP are becoming increasingly bureaucratic.

The Sponsors' Alliance believes a funded Tradeshow Access Programme, that compares with that of our EU competitors and as part of a broader export support offer, will significantly help SMEs to secure export business.


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About the Sponsors' Alliance

Follow us on Twitter @SponsorsAllian1 #sponsorsalliance

As industry organisations, set up by industry for industry, we are passionate about the industries we represent and the importance of exports.

We work closely with HMG where our industries' interests are aligned. Where they do not, we act as a critical friend, bringing knowledge and industry partnership to the table.

Currently there are around 60 trade associations and chambers of commerce in the Sponsors' Alliance. Almost all members are accredited Trade Challenge Partners (TCPs), who are not-for-profit, national, independent, cross-sectorial and membership based.

Sponsors' Alliance members organise and account for approximately two thirds of the Tradeshow Access Programme (TAP) events and budgets. The Trade associations and Chambers of Commerce within the Sponsors' Alliance represent around 14,000 companies (and reach another 10,000) and one million employees. Those companies generate over 70bn with exports of over 37bn

Views on the Sponsors' Alliance:

"The Sponsors' Alliance is a very effective lobbying organisation which assists UK SME companies to lobby the government and opposition on International Trade. In particular, the Alliance focuses on improving the funding available for overseas exhibitions to enable the UK to promote themselves in overseas markets. We are wholly behind this initiative of like minded trade associations and are pleased to give our support."

Sir Ronald Halstead, President, Engineering Industries Association

"The need to ensure that accurate first hand information gets to the right people in Government and the Opposition is vital if policy is to be meaningful. The close relationship the Sponsors' Alliance has with DIT and other Government departments has made a significant contribution in enabling UK companies to promote themselves in overseas markets. The AEA is an enthusiastic supporter of the Sponsors' Alliance."

Roger Lane-Nott, CEO, AEA

Manifesto 2019 - Getting the right deal for UK exporters

The Sponsors' Alliance is preparing its 2019 manifesto.

In particular, we shall be asking whether the Department for International Trade's export and investment services are fit for purpose and sufficiently resourced? We shall be suggesting a whole raft of measures to help SME companies to export or develop in new markets. We shall also be urging Government to review the real effectiveness of GREAT campaign internationally.

The Sponsors' Alliance continues to campaign for nationally run and well thought-out schemes to give companies support where it is most needed. With this in mind, we expect to question the logic of DIT's new insistence that 75% of all TAP grant funding should be channeled to companies with a turnover between 83k and 5m. Surely we should be targeting all SME companies?

While our European and International competitors benefit from support far in excess of their British counterparts, we ask, is our government helping or hindering exporters?



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