DIT Services to Experience Economy Companies

The Department for International Trade (DIT) has offices in over 100 UK Embassies, Consulates and High Commissions worldwide.   This global network is a resource that can help you develop your company overseas.  By making contact with DIT, you can access a resource which is designed to increase your turnover generated from overseas markets.  For the list of all the markets in which DIT are active, please refer to: www.great.gov.uk.

The support that DIT can provide is often free, or highly subsidised, and in some cases, grants can be made available for a particular activity.  What follows is a summary of some of our key services:

1. International Trade Advisors (ITAs)
Our International Trade Teams are located in over 40 local offices around the country. In each region, there are ITAs who can talk directly to you.  ITAs have experience working internationally, and many are specialists’ who have worked in your particular business sector. 
An ITA can provide advice on the range of DIT services available to support your company.  Whether you are new to exporting, or wish to develop in further overseas markets, there is a range of support and services to help.  Whether you require advice on export documentation, contacts in overseas markets, market selection, overseas visits, e-commerce, export training, market research, or a host of other issues, speak to an ITA who can help.  You’ll be able to ask questions, assess your capabilities from a fresh perspective, and plan possible next steps for your company. 
To find an International Trade Advisor please refer to this link: https://www.contactus.trade.gov.uk/office-finder.

2. Tradeshow Access Programme grants (TAP)
The Tradeshow Access Programme provides funding in the form of grants for eligible businesses to attend overseas tradeshows. The funding helps your business gain:
• market knowledge
• experience in attending and getting the most from overseas trade shows
• advice and support from trade experts

How the service works
The grants are based around the Tradeshow Access Programme Calendar of Supported Events 2017 to 2018 (MS Excel Spreadsheet, 97.5KB) with an appropriate accredited trade organisation leading the UK’s involvement at each event. Businesses usually take part as a group, led by the trade organisation for that tradeshow.

What you’ll get
DIT can offer grants to eligible businesses taking part in the programme. The grants must be matched by the business’s own expenditure on direct exhibiting costs eg:
• exhibition space costs
• stand costs - including design, construction and stand dressing
In some cases grants may also be agreed to match against direct conference costs where the purpose of attending is to promote the business, e.g.:
• conference fees
• cost of preparing conference promotional material

Category Current grant levels
Group exhibition (European location) £1,500
Group exhibition (long haul) £2,000
Group exhibition (typical high growth market) £2,500
Group exhibition - first time exhibitor at an event in a high growth market £3,000
Grant levels may be subject to change. You’ll be told about any trade organisation service or management fee charges before you sign up.
You can claim a maximum of 12 grants, but 6 of them must be taken in the following emerging and high growth markets:
• Brazil
• Mexico
• Malaysia
• South Korea
• China
• Qatar
• Thailand
• Taiwan
• Colombia
• Russia
• Turkey
• Egypt
• Saudi Arabia
• India
• Singapore
• Vietnam
• Indonesia
• South Africa
• Hong Kong

To be eligible for a grant you must:
• be based in the UK (excluding Isle of Man or the Channel Islands)
• be a small or medium-sized enterprise, UK university, UK government funded centre of higher or further learning or UK government funded research organisation
• be either actively investigating export opportunities for your own business
• be a new exporter (exports accounting for no more than 25% of your turnover) or have exported for no more than 10 years
• be within the State Aid limit of €200,000 over any rolling 3 year period
• not receive any other public funds towards eligible costs for the grant you are applying for
• not have been fully committed to attend the event prior to seeking the grant
You must also be able to demonstrate that you are either:
• selling products or services which originate from the UK
• adding significant value to a product or service of non-UK origin
View the Tradeshow Access Programme Exhibitor Terms and Conditions (MS Word Document, 120KB)

3. Market Access Programme grants
MAP (Market Access Programme) grants of £300 - £775 are available to SMEs joining a mission. Once a company has been offered a place, they will be sent a MAP application form.

An SME is defined as a company with fewer than 250 employees which EITHER has an annual turnover not exceeding €50m or an annual balance sheet total not exceeding €47m. Payment of the MAP grant will be made 30 days after your return from the mission.
The amount available is based on the mission country:
Country MAP grant available for SME's
China £750
Hong Kong £600
Japan £700
Malaysia £500
Mexico £650
UAE £450

4. Export Marketing Research Scheme (EMRS)
The EMRS provides independent advice, at no charge, on carrying out marketing research; whether you’re looking at new markets or re-evaluating an existing one. In addition companies may be eligible for a grant of up to 50% of the cost of conducting market research.
So if you’re too busy to consider new markets, or you’re not even sure where to start, the EMRS could provide the solution you need

5. Overseas Market Introduction Service (OMIS)
DIT's Overseas Market Introduction Service (OMIS) is a flexible business tool, letting you use the services of our trade teams, located in our embassies, high commissions and consulates across the world, to benefit your business.
Our overseas staff are at the heart of the service because of their local language skills, market knowledge and extensive political and commercial contacts.
Whether you're a first timer or a very experienced exporter, a broad range of elements can be combined to suit your individual needs. OMIS can provide help at any stage - from initial research, to arranging a market visit, to using our contacts and impressive facilities to help close a major deal.
Work can include:
• likelihood of success in the market and market entry strategies
• business opportunities and identification of possible partners
• advice on local conditions, including competitors, regulation and standards
• advice on accessing and influencing decision makers
• arrangements for a promotional event
The local experts will then discuss, develop and agree a quote. This can include:
• pre-visit research and support
• appointments with target customers or potential business partners or agents
• organisation of receptions, meetings or seminars for you to present your product or service
There is a charge for OMIS services calculated on a case by case basis.

To find out more

For more information on all DIT services, please refer: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-international-trade/about-our-services

Details correct as of December 2016.