Mark Garnier MP unveiling the new Education Advisory Group
UK launches advisory group to support education exports

The UK Department for International Trade (DIT) has announced a new Education Advisory Group to support the country's international education sector.

The announcement was made by Mark Garnier MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for International Trade, who will chair the new group, during a special DIT briefing and reception event last night in London, entitled Supporting the Internationalisation of the UK Education Sector.


The group will consist of representative bodies covering universities, vocational training, international schools, education technology, early years education and English language training. 


Unveiling the initiative, he said, "We will have people who talk to us on an ongoing basis and that we can feedback to the industry. We want to make sure that we are going to the right markets."


Earlier in the evening, Dr Liam Fox, Secretary of State for International Trade and President of the Board of Trade, opened the event, saying, "I spend a great deal of time talking up the international education industry. I am delighted to say that it outperformed the London insurance sector, which shows how critical it is for future vital trading."


Praising the successes and growth of the sector, he said, "These are achievements we should be shouting from the rooftops. They are an enhancement of our global reputation and a driver of wealth."


He also announced a new UK Skills Partnership, in which members will work together to build TVET capacity and engagement.


Minister Garnier said, "The UK is already a world leader in education exports and this sector will be vital for our future trading relationships. We know the demand is there, and I want to see even more UK education providers exporting their expertise.


"So I'm delighted that we're creating two new platforms to help the sector operate in overseas markets. As an international economic department we will work with the industry to unlock its exporting potential, and create a new generation of young people with a personal connection to Britain."


During the event, Geoff Glading, Head of Education at DIT, also outlined the role of the department in promoting UK education exports and opportunities in the four target regions: ASEAN, the Middle East, China and Hong Kong, and Latin America.


In relation to ASEAN, he highlighted growing demand beyond the traditional markets of Malaysia, Vietnam and Thailand, and he said that although the Middle East had been quiet because of the low oil price there were increasing levels of interest and that a range of countries had vision strategies.



By Matthew Knott

News Editor