Press release

Business Secretary calls on industry to help shape UK’s future trade map

Business Secretary’s call for industry and business to help shape future trade and investment policy.


A letter outlining action already taken by government to engage businesses and planned next steps, following last week’s referendum outcome, has been sent today (3 July 2016) to over 100 of the largest businesses and trade organisations in the UK.

Penned by Business Secretary Sajid Javid and Trade and Investment Minister Lord Price, the letter follows a series of meetings that have taken place over the past week to engage businesses in an “ongoing dialogue” with government to hear their “priorities, issues and ensure we are clear on what you want to see in terms of the end result”. It provides an update on future engagement activity and asks businesses to contribute to “informing our approach and priorities for engagement with all of our international partners to set out the options for UK trade policy going forward”.

The Business Secretary and Trade and Investment Minister also confirmed that the Chief Executive of the Intellectual Property Office John Alty, has been asked to lead a team tasked specifically with engaging with businesses of all sizes on trade policy issues.

Business Secretary Sajid Javid said:

Now more than ever, businesses need certainty to ensure the best outcome for the UK economy in the coming months so it’s vital that the government maintains an open and continuous dialogue. This is all part of BIS’ Business Strategy to work collaboratively with businesses and we must keep on working together to make sure the world knows that the UK is open for business and remains an attractive place with which to trade and invest.

The letter has been sent to businesses including those who attended the Business Secretary’s business roundtable on Tuesday 28 June 2016, those who Lord Price has spoken to and met with over the past week and those who attended the Prime Minister’s business advisory group meeting on Thursday (30 July 2016).

It also asks what further work UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) could be engaged in to help them as a business find and capitalise on new export opportunities and attract inward investment.

Trade and Investment Minister Lord Price said:

As part of BIS’ wide-ranging business engagement activity, I have written to a number of companies and inward investors to reiterate that part of my role, as with my predecessors, is ensuring that government’s trade and investment policy is guided by their needs.

The first meeting of the new inter-ministerial group on business engagement, chaired by Mr Javid, will be held next week.

Published 3 July 2016