International Trade Summer School launched to upskill the nation

Department for International Trade (DIT) gives students practical skills in global trade, launching them on international business career paths.

Thirty students will this week learn from businesses and trade experts about the vital role of international trade in helping companies thrive at the first International Trade Summer School.

Launching the initiative, International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox MP called on the next generation of business leaders and policy makers to broaden their horizons, deepen their knowledge and prepare themselves for the exciting opportunities ahead in the global economy.

The 3-day event is organised by DIT’s National Trade Academy Programme, part of the Board of Trade, which aims to upskill the nation on international trade and build a culture of exporting through a range of educational projects and initiatives.

International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox speaking at a lectern.
International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox addressing the students

The Summer School sees DIT working with a number of partners, from business organisations to banks. These include the Institute of Exports & International Trade, Barclays and the City of London Corporation, as well as successful exporters like premium tonic maker Double Dutch, to deliver interactive sessions equipping the next generation of exporters and entrepreneurs with the tools they need to succeed.

Over the 3 days, the students will also take on an Apprentice-style export challenge. They will be tasked with creating an exporting strategy to boost sales of bicycles manufactured in Sheffield, in a scenario not unfamiliar to trade advisers at DIT which each year helps tens of thousands of companies take the first steps toward exporting.

Opening the first International Trade Summer School, International Trade Secretary and President of the Board of Trade Dr Liam Fox MP said:

Through the National Trade Academy Programme, my international economic department is working to energise and educate the next generation of exporters and entrepreneurs and this summer school will do just that, giving students a comprehensive and practical insight into the world of international trade.

As the UK gets ready to leave the European Union and make its own independent trade policy for the first time in 40 years, students will learn about the vast benefits that free trade brings to national economies as well as the enormous potential that a truly global Britain offers individuals and businesses across the UK.

Lord Mayor of the City of London Charles Bowman said:

The UK has prospered as a result of strong relationships with international partners. As we edge closer to departing the European Union our global trade links will become even more vital.

Equipping students, individuals and businesses with the tools to enhance these international links is a tremendous initiative that the City of London is proud to be a part of.

I look forward to meeting delegates to discuss how we can bolster the trade of the future.

Andy Fishburn, Head of Investment at Virgin StartUp, said:

We’re thrilled to be hosting day 3 of the National Trade Academy Programme’s Summer School to showcase some of UK’s best exporters and help inspire the entrepreneurs of tomorrow.