New measures to boost digital trade and help turn the UK into a global tech powerhouse were announced on Wednesday 10 June by the International Trade Secretary, answering industry calls for support for UK tech firms.
Liz Truss unveiled a package of strategic interventions during London Tech Week to support UK tech companies to seize trade and investment opportunities overseas. Developed in partnership with stakeholders across the industry, the interventions will boost the sector over the long-term and aid its immediate recovery from Coronavirus.
The new measures jointly announced by the Department for International Trade and Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, will seek to increase tech exports to fast-growing international markets, including Asia-Pacific, strengthen scaleups’ market readiness to export, and attract investment to drive innovation and create jobs.
The comprehensive range of measures include the creation of a new Digital Trade Network for Asia-Pacific, which will support UK SMEs to break into the Asian market. The plans also include the launch of a new Tech Exporting Academy, which will provide expert advice to UK scaleups on subject areas essential to expansion, including regulation, intellectual property, and compliance. The Academy will be led and delivered in partnership with leading professional services firms.
The measures are being announced as part of a wider programme of support for UK tech to ensure the industry benefits from trade opportunities, including future free trade agreements (FTAs). The UK is currently a world-leader in tech and digital, attracting more than £10bn worth of investment in 2019, ranking third only behind the US and China. Future FTAs with partners like the US and Japan will enable the UK to go further, setting new standards in areas of digital technology and e-commerce, and encouraging further investment into the UK’s world-leading tech companies.