Government help for exporters
UK Export Finance (also known as the Export Credits Guarantee Department) is the UK’s official export credit agency.
It helps UK exporters by ‘underwriting’ bank loans offered to overseas buyers of UK products and services. This means it takes on the risk of the loan from the bank, so that the bank is more likely to offer it.
It can also help exporters to:
- raise tender and contract bonds
- access working capital finance
- secure confirmations of letters of credit
Find out more UK Export Finance products and services.
UK Export Finance offers insurance to UK exporters against the risk of non-payment by overseas buyers.
UK Export Finance looks at applications on a case-by-case basis. However, to be eligible:
- you must be in business in the UK
- the buyer must be overseas
Read the guide to export insurance for more information.
Organisations in the private sector also offer export insurance.
Overseas investment insurance
UK Export Finance offers overseas investment insurance to UK companies that invest abroad. This covers your company against loss resulting from some political events (eg war, nationalisation of business contrary to international law) in a country you’ve invested in.
For more information on what’s covered and eligibility, read theguide to overseas investment insurance on the UK Export Finance website.
Your business can apply for training and support from UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) or use UKTI’s online services.
You can apply for the Passport to Export programme which helps small or medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to start exporting or grow an emerging export business.
You can apply for the Mid-Sized Business Programme if your company has a turnover between £25 million and £250 million. UKTI advisers will support you to assess your readiness to start exporting or expand existing export business.
You may be eligible for the Gateway to Global Growth programme. It helps small and medium-sized companies with 2 to 10 years’ exporting experience. The 1-year programme offers guidance and mentoring.
Finding new markets and opportunities
You can expand your business using the following services from UKTI:
- help researching new markets (Export Marketing Research Scheme)
- introductions to overseas markets (Overseas Market Introduction Service)
- international sales leads (Business Opportunities)
- details of major projects with at least £250 million of contracts open to UK competition (High Value Opportunities Programme)
Tradeshows and market visits
You can apply for grants to attend tradeshows from the Tradeshow Access Programme.
You can also get help to prepare a visit to an overseas market usingMarket Visit Support.
Find details of trade events, seminars, webinars, exhibitions and trade missions on the UKTI events website.
Improving your communications
You can apply to have an Export Communications Review (ECR). This will help your business overcome language and cultural barriers, and develop an international communications strategy.
Defence and security sector
You can get support from the UKTI Defence and Security Organisation (UKTI DSO).
You can get support from the Aid Funded Business service if your company wants to work on projects funded by development banks or aid agencies.
Find your local UKTI office.