By Daniel Hunter

The Government will sign new five-year contracts with locally based providers to deliver export support to businesses, Trade Minister Lord Livingston announced today (Wednesday).

The preferred bidders have been chosen by UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) and the length of contracts will give businesses consistency and underline the Government’s long term commitment to increase the number of companies that export.

All the providers will be locally based, helping companies start exporting or increase their overseas business by finding customers in new markets, taking part in trade shows and exporting online around the world.
The lengths of the contracts also mean that English companies will be eligible to bid for up to £100 million in additional export support through the European Structural & Investment Funds.

Trade Minister Lord Livingston said: “I am delighted that we can commit to long term contracts and provide the support that businesses need to break into new markets creating jobs and growth for their region.

“UKTI will be working with locally based organisations, including social enterprises and Chambers of Commerce, to ensure that public money is targeted at where it is most needed and spent responsibly.”

UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) helped a total of 47,960 businesses in 2013 to 2014 to export for the first time or find new markets through its extensive network of specialists in the UK and in British embassies around the world.

The preferred bidders are:

South West — Business West incorporates the Bristol, Bath, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire Chambers

South East — GLE, a not for profit Enterprise Agency

London — GLE

East — Exemplas Trade, owned by Owned by University of Hertfordshire

East Mids — EMB, A not for profit business 75% owned by East Midlands Chambers of Commerce — the Chambers covering Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Northampton

West Mids — West Midlands LLP, A partnership of all West Midlands Chambers of Commerce

North East — North East Chamber of Commerce

North West — Chamber Link who contract with six major North West (NW) Chambers of Commerce and other NW Chambers for the delivery of UKTI services

Yorkshire and Humber — Enterprise Growth Solutions, A partnership of Exemplas and Reed Solutions

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