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3 March, 2015 - 08:40 By Kate Sweeney

Pain plans to gain new export success for region

Alan Pain, new director heading up export body UK Trade & Investment in the East of England

A new director has been appointed to head up export body UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) in the East of England.

Alan Pain joins from his latest role as corporate director at Fenland Council where, in addition to his corporate responsibilities, he had a focus on economic development.

His CV reflects a blend of private and public sector experience. He is charged with maintaining and increasing the enormous potential export growth for the region – one of the highest in the country.

Pain said: “The East of England is an exporting powerhouse and we want to aim higher still to export more than ever this year.“The challenge for me lies with increasing the number of companies across the region exporting to meet the national target of getting 100,000 more companies exporting by 2020.

“Having worked to support businesses across the East of England for the last 11 years, I am more than well aware of the huge number of innovative and successful firms that are based here, and will be focusing my efforts on converting successful companies into successful exporters.

“It’s a big challenge, but I strongly believe that exporting is how we are going to continue to promote the growth of the local economy.”

In 2004, Pain joined the Regional Development Agency network where he headed the business and enterprise agenda throughout the East of England. This included responsibility for services such as Business Link as well as financial support and inward investment. From 2009, as a local government director and chief officer, Pain oversaw business relationships, investment, economic development and planning delivery. He also served as a non-executive director with the Chamber of Commerce in Cambridgeshire. Pain holds a degree in engineering and commerce and a diploma in industrial studies from the University of Birmingham and is a member of the Institute of Engineering and Technology.

He added: “I have worked closely with the region’s businesses for a number of years and recognise the challenges and issues faced by firms in the global economy. “A key focus for me now will be exploring how we can encourage firms to export for the first time, to use digital technology, and to embrace emerging markets.

“While the EU is still the East of England’s biggest market, growth will also come from places like Brazil, Russia, India and China. And that’s what I am here to help with: ensuring firms in the region have the support necessary to embrace this. Our region has many strong successful sectors – from engineering to agriculture to research and development – and I intend to ensure every business in the region is in line for a share of global contracts.”

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