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09 March 2020

We're recruiting: Head of Market Access, SE Asia and Japan

We're recruiting: Head of Market Access, SE Asia and Japan
Learn more about the latest role at the Scotch Whisky Association.

Competitive salary and benefits package.

Location: Edinburgh or London

The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) is seeking to appoint a Head of Market Access SE Asia and Japan for the International Team.

About the SWA

The SWA is one of Britain’s leading trade associations, with a worldwide reputation.  It leads and coordinates over 70 member companies, representing over 95% of the industry, to achieve the best outcomes for the industry across Scotch whisky’s 180 export markets on trade, tax, regulation, environment, legal and other issues. 

The Team

The International team takes responsibility for the Scotch whisky industry’s trade and export market work on behalf of the member companies.  This team ensures that the Scotch whisky industry has fair market access around the world and operates in a competitive global trade environment. 

The Team is split between the SWA’s London and Edinburgh offices. This role could be based in either the London or the Edinburgh office and it is expected that there would be regular travel between the two offices, to industry sites in Scotland and travel to overseas markets.

Within the team there is a transition of responsibilities from an existing team member and therefore on hand support and mentoring is available and it is expected that you would work together during a transition phase. Therefore, this would be an ideal role for someone who has some experience in trade and market access and is looking for the opportunity to grow and gain more experience and expertise.

The Role

The Head of Market Access for SE Asia and Japan reports to the Director, International to promote the industry in these specific geographic regions.  It involves working closely with governments around the world and at home (both the Scottish and the UK governments), as well as with international organisations such as the World Trade Organisation and the EU, to ensure that Scotch whisky can be exported efficiently and sold successfully into those markets.  A key aspect of the role is driving the right trade outcomes for the industry within SE Asia and Japan.

You will also support the Deputy Director with market access strategies in India, which represents significant trade opportunities for the sector.

The Opportunity

As part of the Market Access team, you will have the opportunity to build up close working relationships with key players and stakeholders in the region; identify and quantify market opportunities and threats for the industry and seek to find solutions to open up market access for scotch whisky, which is one of the leading exporting industries in Scotland and the UK.  There is an opportunity to grow and develop within this role to broaden your existing experience.

Your background and experience

We are looking for someone who interested in foreign trade, has an understanding of how  foreign trade markets operate, in particular SE Asia, Japan and India; who can prove that they have the personal attributes and skills to build relationships and represent the industry effectively; who can think strategically and on their feet in the moment when at home and abroad.  You will be able to find imaginative solutions to complex policy and trade barrier problems on behalf of an organisation or an industry.  You must be able to build relationships with a wide range of stakeholders, including at the highest levels of government, and communicate clearly and with impact. 


  • Politically astute, excellent interpersonal skills, able to influence, build and maintain strong working relationships with a wide range of stakeholders
  • Network of contacts that will support you in building a network in Westminster and in overseas markets including special advisors and officials
  • Experience of developing detailed policy proposals on complex issues and execute strategies to advance agreed priorities
  • Outstanding written and oral communication skills, and ability to articulate SWA priorities through the media and in other platforms
  • Confident to travel and operate independently and as part of a team, at home and abroad


  • Some experience of international trade law, economics or government service

Please send a CV and cover letter to by midnight on Tuesday 31st March 2020.

SWA are an equal opportunities employer and oppose all forms of unlawful or unfair discrimination. We take every possible step to ensure that individuals are treated equally and fairly and that decisions on recruitment, selection, training, promotion and career management are based solely on individual merits and abilities, appropriate to the job.

Interviews are expected to take place the week commencing 6th of April 2020; with Panel Interview likely to take place week commencing the 20th of April.