Annual CPD

IST members are required to complete a minimum number of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) hours annually. Professional membership bodies use CPD to ensure that members are proactively engaged in enhancing their knowledge and skills to meet the needs and challenges of the industry.

International trade professionals across a broad range of business sectors face significant challenges such as supply chain problems related to Covid-19, Brexit, and the urgent need for all industries to play their part in combating climate change and adapting more sustainable and ethical business practices. The IST’s CPD framework will provide members with opportunities to upskill in the three core areas of International Trade, Sustainability and Leadership. Developing competencies in these three essential learning areas will help equip members with the knowledge and skills they need to tackle the challenges of a rapidly changing business landscape.

CPD Hours

The following minimum CPD hours are required for IST members:

  • Sustainable Trade Manager (STM): 12 Hours
  • Sustainable Trade Practitioner (STP): 10 Hours
  • Sustainable Trade Associate (STA): 6 Hours

50% of annual CPD hours must be sustainability-related activities. 

CPD Activities

CPD covers a broad range of activities that provide evidence of professional development or learning that goes beyond an individual’s daily or regular work tasks.

The IST recognises the following CPD activities:

  • University-accredited education programmes
  • Non-accredited education and training courses
  • Self-directed e-learning courses
  • Presenting at IST/IEA seminars or events
  • Attending IST/IEA seminars or events
  • Mentoring or coaching
  • Written articles or contributions
  • Work-based learning or other professional activity


Each IST event will have an allocated number of CPD hours. For CPD activities not booked through the IST website, members will need to email [email protected] with evidence of the activity.

The table below provides a list of specific activities and their associated CPD hours. The below list is not exhaustive and will evolve over time to meet the needs of the industry. Activities that require considerable time commitments are capped at 12 hours for the purposes of CPD as this is the maximum annual CPD hours required for any IST membership level.