Dear Members and Friends,
Although we have been able to host face-to-face events for a while now, I was reminded this week how valuable it can be to get the opportunity to gather in person. We were delighted to host Stefan Dercon who was most recently Development Policy Advisor to successive Foreign Secretaries at the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) between 2020 and 2022. Stefan shared insights from his recently published book, ‘Gambling on Development’. Building on three decades’ experience across forty-odd countries, Stefan probed into how development has been achieved across the world, and explored why some countries have prospered, while others have failed. It was great to see a number of Heads of Business from our member companies in the flesh. We will be scheduling a more open event with Stefan and this should be on our events page early next week. We will look to continue increasing the frequency of face-to-face events within the overall programme.
This week, we also hosted the Asian Development Bank’s Director of Macroeconomic Research Abdul Abiad, who took us through the key highlights from the Asian Development Outlook 2022 report launched last month. Insights included the drivers of recovery across the region and perspectives on the key risks weighing on the region’s outlook. Abdul spoke of an Asia whose outlook is positive despite the headwinds. Whilst recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic varies across the continent, there has been great progress and economies are picking up. With a UK government that has a growing interest and focus on the Indo-pacific region we look forward to exploring opportunities for UK plc.
On Tuesday, the Safeguarding Leads Network (SLN) hosted Inez Książek, Programme Manager of the Misconduct Disclosure Scheme (MDS), who gave a briefing on the steps that private sector organisations need to take in joining the initiative. The MDS is now open to private sector organisations working in development or humanitarian spheres. This is a significant step forward in preventing perpetrators of Sexual Exploitation, Abuse and Harassment (SEAH) from moving between our organisations. If you would like to enquire about joining the SLN or the Working Group, please contact Iulia Ward.
Although it is a short week next week, we look forward to two events tackling key themes around climate change.
On Tuesday 31st May, we will be hosting a climate change-focused event on the impact that the European Union’s Green New Deal will have on UK businesses. As the European Union begins to rapidly pursue its climate related targets, a multitude of new regulations are being brought in that will ultimately impact on both trade and development projects delivered by UK businesses. These regulations are likely to be very similar to the regulatory agenda that will be pursued by the UK and others in the future and will give members a clear view of the likely requirements going forwards. Do join us to find out more.
On Wednesday 1st June, we will also be hosting a panel event the with BEI Built Environment/Infrastructure Working Group who will be presenting their latest work on Resilience in the Built Environment. Resilience has long been a core aspect of the Built Environment, but now with the increasing impact of climate change, this topic has gathered renewed significance amongst businesses and policymakers. Join us for this online event as our panelists share insights into the Group’s unique framework for contextualising the UK export offer in this area, whilst also showcasing the latest projects being delivered by UK exporters.
Our programme accelerates through June with multiple events that support global trading ambitions and develop further many of the key themes explored by our Working Groups.
On Tuesday 7th June, our focus on education continues with an in-person event we are hosting in partnership with the Ministry of Education and Training, Vietnam, Chair of the ASEAN Education Sector. Together we will be launching a new policy brief on recovering learning and rebuilding education in the ASEAN region. This policy brief summarises an important discussion between members of the British Expertise International Education Working Group, Ministers of Education from all ASEAN countries, and UK government officials, which was held in March 2022 to share knowledge and support the remediation of education challenges following the COVID-19 pandemic. Please click here to register.
On Wednesday 8th June, with an ever-increasing mandate and a new strategy, we look forward to welcoming British International Investment (BII) previously the CDC Group’s Colin Buckley (Managing Director) and Andrew Palmer (Director of Global Affairs) as they present on the UK’s development finance institution’s new 2022–2026 strategy and key highlights on its role as part of the UK Government’s international development financing offer. We will also look forward to hearing how their strategy aligns to the recently published UK government International Development Strategy. Join us to hear more about BII’s plans and priorities over the coming years. For more details and to register for these events, please click here.
On Wednesday June 8th, join us as we host Lynette Wood, Australia’s Acting High Commissioner to the UK as she shares some insights and ambitions for growing UK-Australia trade as well as perspectives on key areas of opportunity for UK companies in Australia. The two countries enjoy a special relationship and post-Brexit signed an ambitious and comprehensive free trade agreement which is expected to deliver a range of benefits for UK businesses including: tariff-free exports of goods, unprecedented access for service providers, and more opportunities to trade digitally. Key areas of opportunities for UK companies cover a wide range of sectors, including financial services and fintech, technology, cybersecurity, and infrastructure.
Our ‘Meet The Ambassadors’ series kicks off on June 13th — as we engage with British Ambassadors and High Commissioners to countries in West Africa. It is followed by a further 11 regional sessions over the next 10 days.
With June already building to be a busy month ahead, I look forward to the opportunity of engaging directly or virtually with as many of you as possible. With the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations taking place next week, we will be sure to send you a brief note on Wednesday to remind you of the key events taking place throughout June.
Finally, may I wish you all a relaxing weekend.
With Best Wishes
Chief Executive Officer
British Expertise International
Join our Working Groups — as part of our member focus, the working groups offer opportunities for peer-to-peer engagement, learning & sharing, profiling expertise & capabilities and highlighting thought leadership. Groups include Climate Change, Education and Equity, Diversity & Inclusion, and we also support a Safeguarding Leads Network. For details please contact Joe McLynn.
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6th June — BEI Education Working Group
7th June — ASEAN Education Policy Brief Launch
13th June — BEI Girls’ Education Working Group
13th June — Meet The Ambassadors: West Africa
15th June — Meet the Ambassadors: East and Central Africa
15th June — Meet The Ambassadors: Latin America
15th June — BEI Climate Change Working Group
16th June — Meet The Ambassadors: Central Asia
16th June — Meet the Ambassadors: North Africa
21st June — Meet the Ambassadors: South Asia
21st June — Meet the Ambassadors: Southern Africa
22nd June — Meet The Ambassadors: Southeast Asia
22nd June — Meet The Ambassadors: Middle East (non-GCC)
23rd June — Meet the Ambassadors: Western Balkans
External News & Events
10th June — The Africa Forum (Africa in the emerging global economic order) is an annual gathering where OECD officials and African policymakers, private sector, academia, and civil society leaders weigh the continent’s approaches to face the present and the challenges that lie ahead. Event registration and more information can be found on the OEDC development page
28th June — The Saudi British Joint Business Council (SBJBC) is planning a half-day Renewable Energy Forum in London on 28 June 2022 in partnership with the Lord Mayor and City of London. The Forum will focus on investment and partnership opportunities in renewable energy and clean-tech, including hydrogen, and the finance available. For further information or to register your interest please contact Cordelia Begbie at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the SBJBC Events Page.
28th — 29th September — Field Electronics and Sensors Training : The one-day BEGINNER course will give you an introduction to electronics as applied to environmental sensors in the field. The one-day ADVANCED course will build on the Beginners course and Learners will gain advanced knowledge on data logging systems, sensors, communication protocols and remote data downloading. Find more details HERE.
Date TBC — The Government of Jamaica intends to commission the construction of a new Parliament building. JAMPRO intends to host a webinar to explain the opportunity — date to be confirmed and will share with members. Please see below details: ePPS — View Competition details (gojep.gov.jm) https://udcja.com/2022/04/04/construction-of-the-new-jamaica-houses-of-parliament-at-national-heroes-park-kingston-jamaica/