Heathrow Airport has partnered with the Department for International Trade (DIT) to support a new Heathrow grant programme that will fund trade missions, trade show appearances and overseas market research on behalf of small UK businesses.
Named the “World of Opportunity Programme”, the initiative will award 20 small or mid-sized businesses with grants worth £2,000 each to fund trade missions and vital export research.
As part of the partnership arrangement, the DIT, via its “Exporting is GREAT” campaign, will provide the programme’s successful applicants with the mentoring and guidance of an international trade advisor for first time exporters, and will promote the competition in the UK and overseas.
Announcing the launch of the Heathrow grant programme, the airport’s CEO John Holland-Kaye said: “As the UK’s gateway to the world and its biggest port by value, Heathrow wants to do all it can to help British businesses spread their products around the globe and grow international trade.
This latest Heathrow grant programme can be seen as a continuation of the government’s plan to make sure more UK businesses benefit from the economic opportunities presented by Heathrow – viewed as Britain’s sole international “hub” airport.
For the past 20 years, Heathrow has operated a series of Business Summits, which have given small companies the chance to engage with key decision makers in the airport’s supply chain and find out more about opportunities to trade overseas.
As a result of partnerships formed at the summits, the DIT has estimated around £93.4m of new deals have been struck.
“Heathrow plays an important role in supporting UK businesses to reach international markets,” said Britain’s international trade secretary, Liam Fox.
He added: “I’m pleased that as an international economic department, we will work with on this important Heathrow grant programme that will help small businesses up and down the country to access new markets.
“We will continue to work together to not only promote exports from the airport but also the UK as an attractive place to invest in.”
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