2023 Essay Competition Question Paper

2023 Essay Competition

Trade policy now forms a larger portion of public discourse than it ever has before.

With Brexit, Covid-19 supply chain disruptions, inflation, environmental policy and aggression from geopolitical adversaries such as China and Russia, students, academics and the public are rightly devoting more attention to trade policy. Issues such as sanctions, tariffs and bureaucracy have entered the public consciousness, and yet the quality of discourse around them has scarcely improved.

The essay competition aims to engage young students and reward intelligent, constructive and persuasive arguments on issues of International Trade. Questions are designed by IFT fellows to be approachable from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds, including politics, philosophy, economics, trade law, jurisprudence, psychology, history and sociology. Questions are also designed to be approachable and stimulating for essayists with a range of qualification levels, from GCSE and A-level through to undergraduate level.

Essay Competition

Essayists will be judged by our panel of examiners on knowledge and understanding of their chosen topic, the competent use of evidence, quality of argumentation, originality, structure, scope, writing style and persuasive force.

The first Institute for Free Trade annual essay competition is OPEN will close on Friday, June 16th 2023.


The candidate who submits the best essay overall will be the 2023 IFT Essay Prizewinner, which includes:

  • £350 prize and certificate
  • An in-person meeting opportunity with Secretary of State for Business and Trade, Kemi Badenoch to discuss your essay.
  • Publication of your essay by the IFT.
  • Honorary Fellowship of the Institute for Free Trade.

The runner-up prize includes:

  • Runner-up certificate
  • Publication of your essay by the IFT.

Registration and submissions are open to all candidates UK-resident and over 16 years old via this link. Submissions must be made before midnight on the 30/06/2023 here, or to info@ifreetrade.org

2023 Essay Competition Question Paper