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Government launches digital trade platform

The Department for International Trade launches an online digital trade hub to help businesses gain access to international markets

The government has launched an online digital trade platform to help UK businesses break in to foreign markets.

The Department for International Trade (DIT) has launched the platform called Great.gov.uk, which aims to act as a hub for UK and international trade and investment.  

International trade secretary Liam Fox said maximising opportunities for international trade is crucial to the UK’s “future prosperity”, and that currently only 11% of British businesses export abroad.

“Some businesses have told us they don’t know where to start or how to make the next step onto the global marketplace. That’s why we want to support UK businesses large and small as they grow, and help them connect with global demand to fulfil our greatest economic ambitions,” he said.

Great.gov.uk will show an international audience that we’re home to the most dynamic and innovative companies in the world and that Britain is open for business as never before.” 

Businesses can register on the platform, which means they become part of a searchable directory the government can use to match products and services “with worldwide demand”. Businesses can then get emails from international buyers who could be interest in their services. 

“Whether businesses are new, occasional or frequent exporters, they will be able to take advantage of the new suite of tools and exclusive deals on fees or commissions with some of world’s leading online marketplaces,” the department said. 

The DIT’s aim is that the platform will help 100,000 more businesses to export their products and services abroad by 2020.

As part of the platform, five major banks and four consultancies have partnered with the department. They include HSBC, Lloyds, RBS, Santander, Barclays, EY, KMPG, Deloitte and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). 

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