The Institute of Export & International Trade (IoE&IT) has opened a £1mn voucher scheme to help British businesses access help to export.

Through the International Trade Accelerator Voucher scheme, businesses receive a £1,100 voucher that they can redeem against the IoE&IT’s services, including training, consultancy, and educational services, in a move the institute says will help accelerate understanding, efficiency and risk reduction in international trade.

This comes after the IoE&IT released data earlier this month showing that the number of UK businesses that export has declined in the year since the country officially separated from the European Union. The March Exporter Monitor, published by IoE&IT in partnership with Coriolis Technologies, also highlighted the impact on UK exporters of global supply chain disruption and the Covid-19 pandemic, leading Marco Forgione, IoE&IT director general, to call for “help and support” to keep goods flowing into and out of the country.

“We have committed over £1mn to the International Trade Accelerator Voucher scheme to equip businesses with the expertise and skills they need to trade internationally,” says Forgione. “We believe in a vision of a global Britain that exports to the world and we back the government’s ambitious plans to reach £1tn worth of exports by 2030. We want businesses to be able to take advantage of all the trade deals the UK is negotiating around the world. That’s why the launch of this scheme is so important right now.”

On offer under the voucher scheme are courses to bring businesses up to speed with the new rules for exporting and importing goods to and from the EU following Brexit, as well as one-to-one “surgeries” with trade experts to help exporters, importers, freight forwarders, bank advisers and international trade intermediaries find answers to specific customs and trade queries. The IoE&IT also provides educational courses up to MSc level for individuals looking to take on senior roles in companies which trade internationally.

The IoE&IT says it is making its International Trade Accelerator Voucher scheme available to all UK based businesses, regardless of their IoE&IT membership status.