BRITISH TRADE INTERNATIONAL
1. British Trade International (BTI) is
the combined FCO/DTI organisation set up following the Wilson
Review of Export Promotion in 1999 and formally launched on 31
May 2000. It comprises Trade Partners UK, which deals with trade
development, trade promotion and outward investment: and Invest
UK (formerly the Invest in Britain Bureau, IBB) which promotes
the whole of the UK as a location for inward investment.
2. While Trade Partners UK has the trade
development and promotion remit for the entire UK, it has worked
closely with Scottish Trade International (STI), Wales Trade International
(WTI) and Trade International Northern Ireland (TINI), in developing
the National Strategy for International Trade Development and
Promotion. Each of the devolved Administrations has had a seat
on the BTI Board since its inception and is represented at senior
official level. This forum continues to prove essential for overseeing
the development of BTI's trade development and inward investment
3. Devolution has not resulted in any change
in the distribution of resources available for trade development
and promotion. BTI's working relationship with STI is perhaps
the least changed devolution because of its pre-existing strength.
Work is progressing well to achieve co-branding of all trade development
and promotion work with STI, WTI and TINI.
4. STI, in common with WTI and TINI, has
its own system of local support and service to offer businesses
in Scotland specific help and to call upon what BTI offers through
Trade Partners UK nationally and through our extensive network
of overseas diplomatic missions. About 1,400 man-years are engaged
in trade promotion work overseas at a cost of £142 million
in over 200 posts and roughly 140 overseas markets.
5. In addition to STI's local support and
services, businesses in Scotland may also apply for grants under
any of the national schemes that Trade Partners UK offers to UK
businesses. Services include the Export Explorer scheme, the Outward
Mission Service, Support for Exhibitions and Seminars Abroad (SESA),
assistance with market sector reports and market research, an
export sales led service, grants towards overseas markets and
6. BTI officials in our posts abroad are
frequently involved in making bilateral representations to host
governments on resolving trade barrier cases as listed in Annex
B. Additionally, and as noted above, BTI works extensively with
UK companies to develop markets for UK products. In this regard,
a special emphasis has for many years been Japan: the importance
of this market for the UK was recognised many years ago, leading
to the creation of the Exports to Japan Unit (EJU), now known
as the Japan Unit, about 20 years ago. Japan is a good, if rather
high-profile, example of UK export promotion activity including
that for Scotch whisky for whom Japan was the fifth largest export
market in 2000 with a value of £126.85 million.
Japan Unit (JU) Collaboration with the Scotch
The JU is currently in discussion with SWA on
a whisky qualification scheme for bartenders to be test-marketed
in Japan from summer 2001. The scheme aimed largely at the Japanese
market would involve a desk-based course of study and an examination,
leading to the award by the SWA of a Certificate in Whisky. It
is being managed in Japan by the head of the European Business
Community Liquor committee. It is expected to be ready for launching
in spring 2002.
JU provides advice from time to time to Japanese
trading companies and department stores on accessing information
on Scotch whisky suppliers via the SWA. JU seeks advice from SWA
on itineraries for visiting Japanese journalists.
Other activities relevant to Scotch whisky
Following the closure in 2000 of the SWA information
office in Tokyo, BE Tokyo has assumed the function of liaison
point for Scotch whisky information in Japan.
Scottish Trade International
A team from JU visited STI in December 2000
to discuss areas of collaboration on consumer goods. The current
focus of STI activities is on the knitwear sector, with a minor
interest in food and drink, for which Europe is the target market.
JU's services are made available to the Scottish regions and a
limited number of Tailored Market Information Reports have been
commissioned. Outward trade missions have resulted with companies
such as Gleneagles Spring Water, Burn Steward Distilleries and
the Orkney Brewery Ltd participating.
Department of Trade and Industry
36 SWA statistical report 2000. Back