Swansea University students had the chance to pitch their trade export strategies to the International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox MP and the Secretary of State for Wales Alun Cairns MP during a visit to the Bay Campus.
The School of Management students, who were taking part in the National Trade Academy Programme’s ‘Trade Export Challenge’, pitched their proposals to Dr Fox and Mr Cairns who were at the University to attend the first meeting in Wales of the Board of Trade, hosted at the Bay Campus.
The Board of Trade , which is the UK Government department charged with helping to boost exports, attract inward investment and spreading the benefits of free trade in the UK, has a network of advisers including prominent figures from business and politics from around the country.
The students collaborated to design a product and export strategy before presenting their findings to a panel of experts including Department of International Trade (DIT) staff, business leaders and influential people in industry. The students were encouraged to consider factors such as such as:-
- Which international markets and customers were being targeted and why
- What routes to market would be used and why
- What were the financial considerations of expanding internationally
The winners of the challenge were later presented with their awards by Dr Fox and Mr Cairns at a Board of Trade Awards (BOFTAs) event which also recognised the achievements of 8 Welsh companies.
Secretary of State for Wales Alun Cairns said:
“I was delighted to see the next generation of global business leaders and policy makers working with such enthusiasm as part of the National Trade Academy Programme today.
“The challenge set, together with the expert support and advice provided by some of our most successful Welsh entrepreneurs will equip them with the knowledge and skills they will need to succeed in the future. All this excellent work, and more, will continue to provide the support needed to ensure that the United Kingdom remains one of the world’s leading trading nations.”
The Vice-Chancellor of Swansea University, Professor Richard B Davies said:
“It has been an exciting experience for Swansea University students to interact with people at the highest levels of government, business and industry – an experience that will enhance their employability and entrepreneurial aspirations.
“As a University with a proud heritage of working with industry this was a great opportunity to showcase how the University as a whole drives forward research and innovation, skills and global relationships and works with SME and large businesses to deliver productivity and wealth generation in the region.”