BEI Weekly Update
Feb 16, 2024

BEI Weekly Update - 16th February 2024

Dear Members and Friends,

Last weekend, I noticed with surprise – though I suppose, to be honest, not that much surprise - the supermarket shelves were already full of Easter eggs. While I think I could have happily waited a few more weeks, it’s a reminder that in business at least we (like the supermarkets) need to be planning ahead for what will, or in some cases just might, be coming along. At BEI, I can share two rather different examples this week. First, with the UK General Election in mind, Luisa has written a blog on our recent session looking at approaches to the Labour Party and the next steps. Secondly, we have begun thinking about this year’s “Meet the Ambassador” series which we expect will be in early July. We plan to repeat the model of last year – a combination of in-person and virtual events – but of course I’m always interested to hear your thoughts. More about that to follow.

On Tuesday, we had the latest in our “Intersections” series: “Intersection of Climate Change and Food Security” in which around 60 members took part. Once again, it’s easy to see that there is a very strong link between climate change and food security, but our excellent panel took us into specific examples (Ethiopia was a striking example) and concrete strategies for addressing the challenges.

The Water Resilience Working Group met (virtually) on Thursday to plan the upcoming launch of their report. Watch this space!

Also on Thursday, Amalie, our Education & International Development Executive chaired our second session with the Caribbean Development Bank, this time with a focus on education and social inclusion, with over 50 participants and a panel from the Bank exploring the opportunities in the sector and explaining how to do business with CDB.

Next week, our International Development Heads of Business Group will meet with Colum Wilson, Head of Humanitarian at FCDO. This should be an excellent opportunity to look into the key UK priorities for this vital sector and FCDO’s strategies for making the most out of the UK’s contribution in an area in which, sadly, there is no sign of a reduction in demand.

On Thursday, the Skills and Training Working Group will have the opportunity to hear from Dr Paryono Paryono, Deputy Director at SEAMEO VOCTECH on the current TVET context in the ASEAN region.

A warm welcome to new member Fathom, a key player in the Global flood risk intelligence space. It’s particularly interesting to learn that in the past few days they have announced that they will offer their flood data for non-commercial use, free of charge, to 16 countries under a new agreement with the World Bank. These countries are among the most vulnerable to climate change, including Pakistan, Somalia, and Yemen, which often struggle with limited data resources. It’s an impressive initiative, which reflects the importance of making data readily available where it can do the most good.

Looking at this week’s programme and next, we continue to try to balance the immediate with the important and longer-term. Without starting our Easter eggs just yet, if you have any thoughts on likely future issues we should be thinking about now, do let me know. I have enjoyed some interesting discussions with members in the past few days; all ideas are welcome.

My best wishes for a restful weekend,

David Landsman 

Executive Chairman

British Expertise International

Recordings of recent past events:

Key events coming up include the following:

  • 19th February 2024 09:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. GMT: Water Resilience Workshop - To facilitate knowledge sharing between UK consultants and key international stakeholders and buyers visiting London for the World Water Tech Innovation Summit, BEI are convening a workshop on Water Resilience. The event will provide the opportunity to showcase the UK’s offer in water resilience and will feature a panel discussion.
  • 22nd February 2024 09:00 a.m. -10:30 a.m. GMT: Skills and Training WG: SEAMEO VOCTECH - Join us for our monthly online Skills & Training Working Group with guest speaker, Dr. Paryono Paryono, Deputy Director of SEAMEO VOCTECH. Dr Paryono’s presentation will offer an overview of the current TVET context in the ASEAN region, an overview of SEAMEO VOCTECH’s work, and ways of partnering up with VOCTECH.
  • 27th February 2024 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. GMT: Transport Infrastructure - World Cup 2030, Morocco. As Morocco prepares to co-host the 2030 FIFA World Cup, there is huge space for UK businesses to collaborate on exciting new projects across the infrastructure landscape. This workshop will provide detail on Transport opportunities.
  • 6th March 2024 09:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. GMT: Education Working Group: The UK is well known for its expertise in education consultancy services: in much of the world “British education” is synonymous with quality. This group enables better collaborative engagement between members, HMG and other key stakeholders. The BEI Education Working Group is now working on the much-awaited Education report on System Strengthening, to be launched in May 2024.
  • 7th March 2024 15:00 p.m. - 16:30 p.m. GMT: Disaster Risk Reduction. Our speakers from the Caribbean Development Bank, Practical Action, Resurgence and UNDRR will draw on their experience to provide an overview of the challenges and some of the solutions their organisations are working on within Disaster Risk Management.
  • 14th March 2024 10:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. GMT: Intersection of Climate Change, Gender-Based Violence and other Harmful Practices - Women and girls can be disproportionately impacted by the climate crisis as it serves to intensify pre-existing inequalities. Our panel will showcase how they are adapting their approach in the nexus of climate change, gender-based violence and other harmful practices.
  • 14th March 2024 14:00 p.m. - 15:00 p.m. GMT: FCDO Development Director: South Sudan - Join us as we host Kobi Bentley, the Development Director in South Sudan for the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO), who will present FCDO’s development strategy, programming and pipeline of opportunities in South Sudan.
  • 24th April 2024 16:00 p.m. - 17:30 p.m. BST: ICAI Review: International Climate Finance - A new review from the Independent Commission for Aid Impact (ICAI) assesses whether the UK is on track to meet its international climate finance commitments. Join Chief Commissioner Tamsyn Barton and other stakeholders to discuss the findings of the report and how UK aid can be used most effectively to meet this monumental global challenge.

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