This article was published before we became the Chartered Institute of Export & International Trade on 10 July 2024, and this is reflected in references to our old brand and name. For more information about us becoming Chartered, visit our dedicated webpage on the change here.

export controls profession

The Institute of Export & International Trade is delighted to be launching a new ‘Export Control Profession’ for people involved in export and import control and trade sanctions compliance.

To mark the soft launch of this new body, the Institute will be running an ‘Open to Export webinar’ about the importance of professional knowledge around Export Controls, which will be taking place at 14.00 – 15.00 (BST) on Thursday 2nd May 2019.

Speaking on the webinar will be Claire Harrison (Department for International Trade - Export Control Joint Unit) and Roger Arthey (formerly Head of Export Control Compliance, Rolls-Royce plc). Both speakers were involved in the formation of the new profession, and sit on its leadership board.

More information and registration details for the webinar can be found at:

The new body will be officially launched at the Department for International Trade’s Export Controls Symposium on Thursday 30th May 2019.

Read more about the new profession here:

The first professional body of its kind in the UK

The new professional body will be run as part of the Institute of Export and International Trade, and its creation is being supported by the Export Control Joint Unit (ECJU) of the Department for International Trade, the UK’s regulator in issues relating to export controls.

The new profession seeks to enable and promote excellence in compliance with export and import control, and trade sanction regulations. Its membership body will represent Export Control Professionals and provide them with essential resources, professional points of contact and learning support.

Members will be able to:

  • Obtain professional recognition of their knowledge and competence through designatory letters, which will only be accredited to those with sufficient experience and qualifications;
  • Gain professional and career development through a combination of qualifications and a Continuous Professional Development (CPD) programme;
  • Enter a support network through which they can connect and share information with other compliance professionals, both home and abroad;
  • Access regular bulletins with the latest local, national and international developments in the industry.

Employers will also be able to access the profession through their membership of the IOE&IT, ensuring the competence and knowledge of their staff through the qualifications and CPD programme, thereby reducing their risks of non-compliance and the associated costs of fines and other sanctions.  Further, through the new body they will gain access to a pool of accredited export control specialists – a valuable recruitment resource.

Upon the launch of the profession, Ian Davis, Chairman of Rolls-Royce plc, said: 

“I welcome and support the creation of the IOE&IT’s Export Control Profession.  Many organisations rely on professional staff to help them ensure that they comply with national and international laws and regulations on export and import control and trade sanctions.   Until now these staff have not had a professional body by which their skills and knowledge are recognised, or to provide structured professional development. This new Profession, supported by the UK regulator, the Export Control Joint Unit of the Department for International Trade, is a major step to help organisations to ensure that their export activities are fully compliant with relevant, prevailing regulations."

Edward Bell, Head of the Export Control Joint Unit, Department for International Trade, said:

“ECJU licenses up to £50 million of exports every working day, enabling UK aerospace, defence, security and other hi-tech businesses to succeed internationally. The UK’s robust system of export controls promotes global security by ensuring a responsible trade in sensitive goods and services.

Expertise in export control requirements and licensing, across industry, ensures compliance with the law and protects business reputation. I am pleased to see this valuable industry led initiative, to enhance the professionalism of people engaged in export control operations and enable them to build recognition for their expertise.”

Lesley Batchelor, Director General of the Institute of Export & International Trade, also said:

“We are delighted to be launching the new Export Control Profession – something that is long overdue! By professionalising the knowledge and skills around export controls, we can ensure better compliance and more confident exporting and importing across the UK.”