Last Monday (30 January), the Institute of Export and International Trade (IOE&IT) held the inaugural meeting for its Export Controls Special Interest Group (SIG).
The event, featured a keynote address by the Export Control Joint Unit (ECJU)’s head of UK engagement, Adrian Bond, as well as networking breakout session and a panel discussion. The event was well received by attendees, who in an exit poll scored it 4.4 out of 5.
This is the first of several SIGs to be launched this year, and Marco Forgione, director general of IOE&IT, explains the benefits to members.
“IOE&IT is establishing these SIGS partly as a result of the conversations we've been having with members, but also to reflect the increasingly challenging and changing environment for international trade.”
And, while there will be more webinars and in-person meetings, SIGs will form part of IOE&IT’s outreach to members, with a focus on interactive forms of engagement.
“The SIGs will give us a great depth of knowledge and expertise in specific areas. And the one we're launching currently, looking at export controls, is an important example.”
Why export controls?
Export controls was picked because of recent geopolitical tensions, which have presented dynamic challenges to members and the wider business community:
“It was important for several reasons, which were brought into sharp focus when the war in Ukraine broke out and sanctions were issued on Russia.
“There was an immediate need for businesses to understand what the government's approach to those sanctions was going to be. The Department for International Trade came to IOE&IT to ask us to reach out to the business community to explain to them the impact of those sanctions.
“As a result of that activity, and the great work and leadership shown by Roger Arthey with regards to export controls, we have set up the SIG to enhance our activity around this area.”
There are continued efforts to build on the work of the SIG, as well as building two more groups:
“For members who join our SIG, what will it look like? There will be a range of additional services they will get, with a specific focus on the areas relating to export controls. Over the coming year, we’ll be introducing other SIGs, for example in food safety and security. Each group will have a tailored range of services and inputs relevant to the needs of members.”
Registration for the next virtual webinar on export controls is open now. Please see here for more details.