Crawford Falconer launches cross-Whitehall international trade profession
Government’s chief trade negotiation adviser brings together officials from 11 departments
Liam Fox and Crawford Falconer. Credit: DIT
Crawford Falconer, the government’s chief trade negotiation adviser, has officially launched a cross-Whitehall international trade profession that spans 11 departments.
The Department for International Trade’s second permanent secretary will bring together heads of profession that have been appointed in 10 other departments to work together on building civil service trade capability as Britain leaves the European Union.
The New Zealand/ UK dual national was hired at DIT for his extensive experience in international trade negotiation, and tasked with building the civil service’s hitherto limited skills in that area. UK civil servants have always worked on trade policy but the EU has had direct responsibility for negotiating trade deals with the rest of the world.
- Civil service introduces 15,000-strong analysis function
- Whitehall hiring policy ‘could be undermining UK trade talks’
- Whitehall trade chief Crawford Falconer pledges UK-US trade deal will not be ‘cooked up by a few bureaucrats’
DIT announced that the new profession would open up new roles and opportunities for those wishing to develop careers in international trade in the civil service. It will also provide “a world class training programme”.
“The recognition of international trade as one of government’s most important skills represents an important step forward in post-Brexit trade preparations,” said the department.
Falconer, head of the international trade profession, said: “As head of profession, it is my job to ensure that UK trade negotiators are ready to strike trade deals around the world and deliver the benefits of free trade to all parts of the country.
“Through the profession we are ensuring government attracts the best and brightest talent by not only offering trade professionals a clear route into working on trade policy, exports and investment at the centre of government but also nurturing their ability for the future through access to world-class training.”
The department has previously said it wants to prioritise building on the trade skills of existing civil servants over bringing in outside expertise. But it has said it will need to look to hire from outside Whitehall to assist with negotiating complex, multi-stakeholder trade deals.
Liam Fox, international development secretary, said: “By establishing the International Trade Profession, we have embedded the development of trade negotiation capability at the heart of the government’s agenda and taken another important step in getting UK trade policy Brexit-ready.”
The CBI director-general Carolyn Fairbairn also welcomed the appointment of the 10 new heads of international trade profession. She said trade between the UK and its partners was “a fundamental catalyst to job creation, productivity and prosperity”.
Serco Health director Abi Tierney will lead HM Passport Office and UK Visas and Immigration
Home Office puts applicants on notice that highly-influential panel's role “may evolve...
Steven Dick worked as the deputy head of mission in Hungary
Refusing to extend Brexit transition amid coronavirus crisis would be ‘irresponsible’, ex-Foreign Office perm sec says
“The world quite literally has changed and I think you have to adapt,” Simon Fraser says.
Cornerstone provide advice on effective approaches for learning management.
How can local authorities and government departments ensure that civil servants are able to...
PA Consulting offers a four-point plan to delivering organisational transformation
With the annual worldwide cost of cybercrime set to double from $3tn in 2015 to $6tn by...