The government is creating four regional trade and investment hubs to lift economic growth across the UK.
International Trade Secretary Liz Truss said on Tuesday that the hubs would be in Belfast, Cardiff, Darlington and Edinburgh.
The government said they will provide support to help regional businesses to access major trade markets and boost exports.
Recent data from the Office for National Statistics showed UK goods exports to the EU fell 40.7 per cent in January.
The economy is nine per cent smaller than it was before the start of the pandemic.
The hubs will provide localised advice from export and investment specialists in a bid to aid the UK’s economic recovery.
“I’m determined to use UK trade policy to benefit every part of the UK. These trade and investment hubs will help this country to an export and jobs-led recovery,” Truss said.
“They will mean we can channel investment into all corners of the country, and that exporters – whether they’re selling Scotch beef, Welsh Lamb or cars made in the North of England – have access to the expertise they need to sell into the fastest growing markets.”
Justin Urquhart-Stewart, co-founder of Seven Investment Management, said that the investment hubs should be in major manufacturing areas such as the North West and West Midlands.
“The trick they’re missing is the concept is right, but actually what you need is to create the businesses, encourage exports and then provide the export advice,” Urquhart-Stewart told the BBC.
“Darlington is a lovely place, but it doesn’t necessarily make the key export places they’d be requiring.
“You’re not exporting anything from there, so why are you giving the export advice?”