Dear Members and Friends,
As the dust settled from the G7 Summit, there were a number of important commitments that were made which will be of interest to our members and a sense of positive momentum with the Global agenda to ‘build back better’. Key principles around building more sustainable economies and committing to free trade were welcome, as were the practical commitments around ending the pandemic in 2022 and getting 40 million more girls in low and middle-income countries into education by 2026. I also noted the commitment to invest in infrastructure and technology in the developing world under the headline initiative ‘Build Back Better World’. Our sister organisation has written an excellent assessment of the outcomes compared to the objectives of the UK Government as host — you can access a copy of the report here.
This week, we completed our ‘Meet The Ambassador’ series, with events that covered; The Middle East, West Africa, Latin America, South Asia, Southern Africa, Southeast Asia, North Africa and The Caribbean.
Over the two weeks, we have had 12 events, and heard from over 40 Ambassadors, High Commissioners and their teams. It goes without saying that we are very grateful for their time and their openness as they responded to an array of different questions from members and guests. Once again, I have been struck by the overwhelming sense of opportunity they are witnessing, coupled with pragmatism around some of the enduring challenges they identify in their markets. It was also clear to me that BEI, with its members, needs to continue to focus on three key themes
- Working to ensure we can gather early visibility of ‘pipelines’ for the benefit of members
- Developing a clear ‘showcase’ of UK’s expertise in a range of areas — in particular, physical and social infrastructure, climate change adaptation, education and health
- Continuing to highlight and tackle the barriers to the ease of doing business in all its forms, for all sizes of organisation, with a focus on supporting SMEs
As I mentioned last week, each of the Ambassadors’ sessions covered so much ground that even if I wrote ‘brief’ highlights, this would be the longest ever weekly report; instead, recordings of the sessions are available here for our members, and if you wanted to get a precis of the main messages, please let Ingrid know directly.
Over the next few weeks, we look to bolster our development aid events programme, where despite the ODA budget cuts and the adverse impact on many programmes, our members continue to deliver exceptional work. Keep an eye on our events page as these events come online.
We will also continue our engagements with the ‘Trade Envoys’ as these provide invaluable opportunities for members to meet in a closed ‘virtual’ round table format with the Prime Minister appointed Trade Envoys. These sessions provide a ‘two way’ information sharing platform, and help us raise key issues and challenges related to doing business in specific regions. The Trade Envoys’ role is to support the drive for economic growth by building on the UK’s existing relations with selected markets and maximising bilateral trade.
Next week there will be two events with Mark Menzies, Trade Envoy to Colombia, Chile, Peru and Argentina. There are still opportunities to join these sessions, to register your interest, click here.
Into July, we will be hosting further Trade Envoy sessions as follows:
- July 1st — Lord Popat, Trade Envoy for Uganda and Rwanda
- July 6th — Richard Graham MP, Trade Envoy for ASEAN Economic Community, Indonesia, Philippines and Malaysia
- July 15th — Andrew Selous MP, Trade Envoy for South Africa
I also wanted to highlight for your diaries a “Deep Dive” on Brazil scheduled for 20th July which will delve in some detail into specific sectors and pipeline of opportunities in this huge market.
Finally, after a week of connecting across the globe on pretty much every corner of the planet, I was struck by the marvels of technology. I think I am right in saying that we survived the perils of connectivity issues across all regions — with one exception. Sadly, South East London clearly had some issues with bandwidth yesterday when I unceremoniously lost connection whilst facilitating the South East Asia Ambassadors event and had to concede hosting to a colleague.
After what has been a very busy week for us, and not doubt for you too — I wish you all a restful weekend — it seems the forecasted rain is determined to scamper any outdoors plans many of us may have had. Looking outside my window, it’s currently pouring as I finish off this newsletter.
With Best Wishes
Chief Executive Officer
British Expertise International
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Currently all our events are hosted virtually and look forward to exploring hybrid event options as the government eases socialising restrictions. For any event registration support please contact the events team. Click on titles to access full event details. The full calendar of events can be viewed here and recently added event dates are highlighted with an asterisk*.
20th July — Brazil Deep Dive
7th September* — Closed Roundtable Discussion with Heather Wheeler MP
External News & Events
20th June — The African Development Bank (AfDB) has funded a consultancy opportunity to provide advisory support to the Ministry of Energy Transition on implementing Algeria’s energy transition agenda. Follow this link to read more and register your interest.
13th July — The Saudi-British Joint Business Council is hosting a UK/Saudi Sustainable Investment Forum at Mansion House in London with investors, government representatives and business leaders. Registration is now open, please follow this link to secure your place.
13th — 16th July — The UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology will deliver an interactive online course on Spatial Analysis in QGIS and R — An Introduction for Environmental Scientists.
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