Press release

Trade boost sought in fast growing export markets

UK Trade & Investment today announced plans for the largest series of trade missions and showcases yet staged to top emerging global markets

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

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The ‘GREAT Weeks’ series starting in September will promote sectors including the creative industries, luxury goods, food, drink and retail in priority overseas markets such as Vietnam, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Brazil, UAE, Hong Kong and Macao, China and USA in 2013 and 2014. UKTI will offer businesses participating in the missions customised programmes as well as the opportunity to meet potential investors, buyers and suppliers.

To recruit companies for the trade missions a regional roadshow will travel around the UK. The GREAT Weeks series is expected to particularly appeal to small and medium sized enterprises. The first of the regional roadshows takes places in London today.

Trade and Investment Minister Lord Green said:

Increasing the number of UK businesses who sell overseas is a fundamental building block of the government’s plan for growth. Worldwide there is a growing appetite and appreciation for British goods and services and awareness of Brand GB remains very high following the success of London 2012 and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

The GREAT Weeks series is designed to capitalise on this by using UKTI’s global network to put companies in front of potential customers in fast growing markets. The campaign will provide a powerful platform for the retail, luxury, food, drink and creative industries to showcase their value in new markets and assist them to grow their businesses.

During September regional roadshows will visit the South East, the South West, London, the Midlands, North of England and the East of England, with further events to be announced in locations including Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Notes to editors:

1.For further information please visit the GREAT Weeks registration or

2.The GREAT Weeks series is part of the international campaign to showcase the very best of what Britain has to offer to encourage the world to visit, study and do business with the UK.

3.The GREAT Britain campaign is the Government’s most ambitious international marketing campaign ever and showcases the very best of what Britain has to offer in order to encourage the world to visit, study and do business with the UK.

4.In the 2012 Autumn Statement, UKTI was awarded an additional £70m for each of 2013/14 and 2014/15, enabling the recruitment of more international trade advisers around the country, expansion of existing services including the Trade Access Programme (TAP) and the Overseas Market Introduction Service (OMIS), and support to expand the range of assistance available to UK companies through overseas British chambers of commerce.

5.The government’s economic policy objective is to achieve ‘strong, sustainable and balanced growth that is more evenly shared across the country and between industries’. It set four ambitions in the ‘Plan for Growth’, published at Budget 2011:

  • to create the most competitive tax system in the G20
  • to make the UK the best place in Europe to start, finance and grow a business
  • to encourage investment and exports as a route to a more balanced economy
  • to create a more educated workforce that is the most flexible in Europe.

Work is underway across government to achieve these ambitions, including progress on more than 250 measures as part of the Growth Review. Developing an Industrial Strategy gives new impetus to this work by providing businesses, investors and the public with more clarity about the long-term direction in which the government wants the economy to travel.

6.UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) is the government department that helps UK-based companies succeed in the global economy. We also help overseas companies bring their high quality investment to the UK’s economy – acknowledged as Europe’s best place from which to succeed in global business. UKTI offers expertise and contacts through its extensive network of specialists in the UK, and in British embassies and other diplomatic offices around the world. We provide companies with the tools they require to be competitive on the world stage. For more information on UKTI, visit or visit the online newsroom at

Published 16 July 2013