The International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox MP has announced the world’s first training programme to recruit tomorrow’s trade negotiators.
The two-year scheme, which pays £30,109 per annum, includes placements with the UK’s expert trade negotiating teams working on future trade agreements with partners including the United States and Australia, as well as the teams supporting UK companies to export their goods and services, and a six-month international placement in one of DIT’s 127 international offices.
Unlike traditional graduate schemes, no qualifications are needed to sign up to the programme, with the majority of candidates expected to be school leavers aged 18 or over, people switching careers or those looking to work in government for the first time.
The scheme is intended to develop the UK’s talent pool of trade policy and promotion experts, as the UK prepares to leave the EU and implement an independent trade policy for the first time in 40 years.
International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox MP said: “For decades, people didn’t look at trade as a viable career option. Now, the International Trade Development Programme will make a career in trade policy and promotion not only viable but highly desirable.
“A whole generation will be equipped with these vital skills, charged with driving our export and investment performance, securing market access deals for our businesses and promoting the UK’s prosperity.
“My vision is that anyone joining the scheme will be able to enjoy their whole career at DIT, building skills and experience across the department to eventually take on one of our highest-ranking and most prestigious roles as HM Trade Commissioners.”
Applications are open until 4 August at: readytotrade.co.uk.
The announcement is part of DIT’s commitment to open up new career and expertise opportunities in trade policy and promotion. Last year, it launched the National Trade Academy Programme which has ran in parallel with the Board of Trade across the UK, giving higher education students unique opportunities to learn about doing business internationally from British entrepreneurs and trade experts.
This year, the National Trade Academy Programme is open to 16-18 year olds for the first time with three Summer Schools in Edinburgh, Bristol and Birmingham. The Schools include trade simulation games to encourage students to think about the challenges and opportunities facing exporters, insights from successful exporters and an exporting challenge.
DIT’s Chief Trade Negotiation Adviser Crawford Falconer said: “This is a great opportunity to show young people that there is a whole range of careers in trade and, for the first time, DIT is opening up these opportunities.
“I look forward to working with some of these young people when they become entrepreneurs, exporters and even trade experts in my team.”