The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has published a 10-point set of proposals it says the government should adopt to help the sector export its services abroad after Brexit
According to the RIBA’s 2018 Brexit Survey, one in five architects wishes to expand to European Union countries or further afield.
The institute said this week that if the UK loses mutual recognition of architectural qualifications with the EU, then barriers to these ambitions would grow taller.
RIBA president Ben Derbyshire said: ‘We must continue to be a global-facing nation if we are to benefit from Brexit; our economy and our leading industries depend on it.’
The proposed measures would create the right circumstances for small to medium-sized practices to seek international opportunities, RIBA claims.
It said that the biggest challenges facing architects seeking to expand abroad are getting information on potential markets and securing financial backing.
The report said: ‘Trade support, from market intelligence to export finance, can make the difference between success and failure – but too often architects report that the support on offer is difficult to access and insufficiently tailored to their needs.’
RIBA’s 10-point plan
- Retain mutual recognition of professional qualifications with the EU and pursue new mutual recognition agreements with priority countries including the USA, Australia and Canada. This will ensure that the sector can recruit and retain the best talent
- A system of priority access for business travellers to support architectural practices to do business in overseas markets
- Better government-industry joint working through a Creative Industries Trade Board
- A long-term, cross-government export strategy to promote British expertise in architectural services and the built environment
- Better market intelligence for architectural practices based on improved knowledge of local commercial environments
- Export finance on more attractive terms for architectural practices
- More accessible and transparent promotion of government trade support to small practices
- Higher quality market introduction reports, tailored to the needs of architects and other service sector businesses
- More in-country support with dispute resolution, non-payment and regulatory challenges
- Co-working spaces to give small architectural businesses access to physical office space