Our Story

We are on a mission to build the proficiency—knowledge, skills and abilities—of people, businesses and organizations to access global markets, reduce and manage the risks of integrative trade, and enable profitable competition.

Our Story

The World's Leading Global Business Training and Certification Provider

The Forum for International Trade Training (FITT) is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing international business training, resources and professional certification to individuals and businesses.

We offer the only international business training programs and related professional designation (CITP®|FIBP®) endorsed by the Canadian government. And our international business training solutions have become the standard of excellence for global trade professionals across Canada and around the world.

Here are some of the moments that created FITT, the people that brought it to life, and the reasons for what we do and why it is so important to us, as well as to businesses and individuals trying to find international success:


To build the proficiency—knowledge, skills and abilities—of people, businesses and organizations to access global markets, reduce and manage the risks of integrative trade, and enable profitable competition.

FITT’s Unique Business Propositions

We pride our organization and its body of knowledge as being the world's most trustworthy source of current, industry-validated information available on how to buy, sell, manufacture, finance and source products, raw materials or services anywhere in the world.

And as an industry-driven world authority on global trade, we always strive to provide reliable and timely knowledge and practical resources to advance the field of global business.

In support of international trade, we undertake the following activities:

  • Identification and promotion of essential international trade knowledge and insights about competency gaps that most commonly impede the success of business, and competency-related promotion
  • Development, delivery and promotion of international trade training and other enabling knowledge, skill and ability-building products and services
  • Responding to specific industries, trade sectors and disciplines to build the proficiencies, including knowledge, skills and abilities, required to become more competitive in international trade
  • Development of proficiency standards for successful international trade, a certification system for trade practitioners, and accreditation for academic providers which meet these standards

Industry roots

FITT was established in 1992 as part of Canada’s sector council initiative. Since it began, our organization has been committed to developing and providing quality training programs, resources and professional credentials designed to prepare individuals and businesses to compete successfully in world markets.

In the late 1980s, Dieter Hollweck, FITT’s founding father, asked himself a straightforward yet profound question: “I could’ve used some answers to key questions when I was trying to sell to foreign markets, so why not create an organization that’s equipped with a body of international trade knowledge and resources that trade practitioners can draw on to succeed in international markets?” And by 1992, on a cold winter day in Ottawa, Dieter set up our desks, plugged in our phones, hooked up our Windows 3.1-powered computers, and pulled together a diverse yet committed group of organizations and people and got down to work to build the organization we have today.

Our Founding Partners

As a not-for-profit organization, FITT is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors that represents our founding and strategic partners. We’d like to recognize and thank the following partners for their dedication and support over the years:

Our Government Founding Partners

  • Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC)
  • Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada (DFATD)
  • Industry Canada (IC)

Our Founding and Strategic Partners

  • Association of Canadian Community Colleges
  • Canadian Chamber of Commerce
  • Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters
  • Canadian Professional Sales Association
  • Export Development Canada
  • I.E.Canada – Canadian Association of Importers and Exporters
  • Saskatchewan Trade and Export Partnership (STEP)
  • World Trade Centres of Canada