New Permanent Secretary to the Department for International Trade

The Cabinet Secretary has appointed James Bowler as the new Permanent Secretary to the Department for International Trade

The Cabinet Secretary, with the approval of the Prime Minister, has appointed James Bowler as the new Permanent Secretary to the Department for International Trade (DIT). He replaces interim Permanent Secretary John Alty who is retiring.

Simon Ridley, currently Director General, Strategy in the Covid Taskforce will take over as the Head of the Taskforce, when James takes up his new role later in the summer.

The Secretary of State for International Trade, Liz Truss MP, said:

“I’m delighted to welcome James to DIT as we enter our next exciting stage. His experience will support our talented, driven department as we negotiate trade deals with key markets across the world, head the G7 trade track and encourage WTO reform.

“He will ensure we continue to encourage investment and exports to help level up the country, particularly through our new trade hubs across the U.K.

“I would also like to say a huge thank you to John for all his work supporting the department over the past few months, and wish him well in his retirement when James starts.”

The Cabinet Secretary, Simon Case, said:

“James’s appointment is great news for DIT. His leadership of the Covid Taskforce has been exceptional and he brings with him a strong experience and expertise gained in a number of senior roles at HM Treasury and Ministry of Justice. I look forward to working with him as he leads the department to deliver the trade, export and investment opportunities the country needs.

“I would like to thank John Alty who has provided strong leadership to the department over the last few months.

“I am also grateful to Simon Ridley for taking over as Head of the Covid Taskforce. He has been a critical part of the team supporting the Prime Minister over the last year and I am delighted that he will be taking on this vital leadership role.”

Commenting on his appointment, James Bowler said:

“I am delighted to be joining the Department for International Trade. With the department having achieved so much in a short period, I look forward to helping to secure further progress on trade agreements, export and investment promotion and levelling-up. I am excited to be joining such a skilled and dedicated group as we put trade at the centre of recovery.”

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