BEI Weekly Update
Sep 30, 2022

BEI Weekly Update — 30th September 2022

Dear Members and Friends,

We have had a good and busy week in terms of events. Links to recordings if you missed them for any reason are at the end of the newsletter. The focus this week’s newsletter is the launch of our Skills and Training Working Group.  

At BEI, we are proud to support a broad mix of members, across Physical and Social Infrastructure, Climate Resilience, International Development and Business Support Services. They collectively represent exceptional expertise in both soft and hard skills that are in high demand in multiple markets around the world, a demand very much substantiated by their overseas embassies here in London. In addition to the wider skills gap, the pressure has been exacerbated by the COVID19 pandemic. Allied to the importance of multiple U.K. standards and certifications that underpin a wide range of international commercial activity, the sale of non-academic, vocational and other skills and training to emerging markets represents a substantial export opportunity. It is currently thought to deliver £500 million to the U.K. with considerably more potential. The potential is global, and Asia-Pacific and EMEA represent particularly significant opportunities to grow the UK’s impact.  

Given this challenge, we have this week announced our own Skills & Training Working Group – designed to demonstrate for all our stakeholders the ways in which UK based organisations can support an extraordinary range of TVET (Technical and Vocational Education and Training) and other areas of Skills and Capacity Development. The Skills Working Group will work closely with our international networks, with Ministries of Education/Technical Education/Labour, foreign embassies, and key UK diplomatic posts around the world, operating alongside the existing Education Working Group and Education-specific events programme. It will facilitate shared learning, drive awareness of the UK’s capability and create opportunities. The first meeting of this group will take place on 26th October. The focus of the first meeting will be very much on unearthing market-specific opportunities alongside the broader discussion around approaches that can be used to tackle the overall challenge.  If you would like to know more about this initiative, or join the Working Group, please contact Luisa.  

Many members have recently encouraged up to increase the volume of ‘in-person’ events in our programme, which we are doing. As we now have a mix of In Person and Virtual Events, we will communicate the event type in this newsletter and other digital communications and hope this ensures that you are able to register for the event knowing the logistics/event type. Here is a summary of events coming up in the next two weeks:

4th October: FCDO Development Director — Ghana  
In person event providing members with the opportunity to meet with Beth Cadman OBE, the FCDO Director for Ghana to explore the strategy and potential pipeline of potential projects.

5th October: Lunch with Sir Suma Chakrabarti  
In person lunch event, 12:30 for 13:00 to 14:30 (BST). Sir Suma will provide an overview of his thoughts on the future of development aid in the wake of growing needs and constrained budgets, where effective use of technology and an increasing focus on partnerships are likely to play a key role.  

6th October: Market Opportunity Overview — Iran  
Virtual event in partnership with the DIT and the British Iranian Chamber of Commerce. This session will clarify the current operating environment for businesses trading with or wishing to expand into Iran — including a definitive guide to the current situation on sanctions and payment.  

6th October: The Energy Transition: In Conversation with Carbon Tracker  
Virtual Event 14:00 to 15:00 (BST). Carbon Tracker is an independent financial think tank that carries out in-depth analysis on the impact of the energy transition on capital markets. Using their team of global financial market, energy and legal experts, they apply research and map risk and opportunity for investors interested in a low-carbon future. This event will be relevant to all members involved in the critical area of Energy Transition.  

7th October: Working Together: Finding solutions to the youth mental health crisis at work  
Virtual Event 13.00–13.45 BST. Our sister organisation, OurVoice, led by Evie Aspinall, will be running this session designed to appeal to younger employees, providing a platform for them to air suggestions and approaches on mental health that they would like to see adopted in their places of work.  

11th October: FCDO Indonesia: Development Priorities  
Virtual Event 9:00 am to 10:30 We will be joined by Amanda McLoughlin, the Development Director in Indonesia for the FCDO who will present the Government’s development priorities and programming for Indonesia.  

NEW EVENT: 12th October: Opportunities for Climate Resilience and Energy Transition in Uzbekistan.
Virtual Event 10:00-11:30 BST. His Excellency Said Rustamov, the Uzbekistan Ambassador to the UK and representatives of EBRD, ADB and Uzbekistan’s Ministry of Energy will join us virtually to address this critical issue and the opportunities it presents for UK based businesses.

NEW EVENT: 13th October: Malaysia : Market Opportunity Overview  
In-person briefing at 23 Grafton Street. 8:30am to 10:30am (GMT). His Excellency Charles Hay MVO and his team will be discussing opportunities in Malaysia for UK businesses. They will highlight specific opportunities in Infrastructure and Climate, Education, Healthcare and Digital Services in what is the UK’s second largest export market in the ASEAN region after Singapore.  

Very Best Wishes  

Peter O’Kane
British Expertise International/Strategy International

Summary of events held in the last two weeks

With links to meetings slides and recordings

20th September: Opportunities in Climate Resilience and Adaptation Recording available here. Slides available here.

21st September: ADB Virtual Business Opportunity Seminar 2 - Covering Urban Development, Climate Resilience, Transport, PPP. Recording available here. Slides available here.

22nd September: FCDO Bangladesh: Development Priorities - No recording available; slides available.

26th September: Kenya Market Opportunity Overview with Alexander Milne, the DIT’s Trade Director for Kenya.  

28th September: The Aga Khan Foundation presentation and discussion with the Aga Khan Foundation and hear about their broad range of work. Slides available here.

28th September: The Aid Transparency Index 2022 Review the findings from the most recent Aid Transparency Report and discussion around future models that might be used to evaluate the impact of Aid related projects. Recording and slides available here.

Longer Term View of Events

In-person roundtable event at 23 Grafton Street. 2:00pm to 4:30pm (GMT). We will hear about the European Bank For Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)’s Strategy, guidance on its Procurement Processes and how to navigate them.  

New: 18th October: Mexico Education Deep Dive with DIT  
Virtual event: 3:00 pm to 4:30 pm (BST). Julio Evaristo, Head of Education, Healthcare and Life Sciences, and Cassandra Vargas, Trade Officer for Education, Health and Life Sciences will provide us with an insight into the key education priorities and an overview of their pipeline.  

New: 20th October: Thailand Education Deep Dive with DIT  
Virtual event: 9:00am to 10:30am (BST). Join us for a deep dive into the education opportunities in Thailand led by the Department for International Trade. The quality of education Thailand still remains a weak point for the country’s human development.  

SAVE THE DATE 20th October: OMFIF/ABSA Africa Financial markets Index – presentation of findings

New: 26th October: Climate Finance: The Development Finance Institutions Perspective

SAVE THE DATE: 31st October: Middle East Regional Market Overview – covering Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Lebanon and Jordan

1st November: Meet Darren Henry MP, Trade Envoy to the Caribbean (12 Commonwealth countries)  
Virtual event: 3:00pm to 4:30pm (GMT).  Darren will have recently returned from a trip to Jamaica and will be in a good position to raise awareness of business opportunities, including plans around major infrastructure projects. T

NEW: 2nd November: Rwanda Education Deep Dive Virtual event: 1:00 to 2:30pm (GMT). Join us for a deep dive into the education opportunities in Rwanda led by the Department for International Trade. Anna Wilson, the Development Director at British High Commission in Kigali, will provide us with an insight into the key education priorities for UK plc looking to do business in Rwanda.

SAVE THE DATE: 3rd November: Jonathan Knott – Regional Trade Commissioner for LATAC

NEW: 24th November: Doing Business with the Caribbean Development Bank – Session one Virtual event: 3:00 to 4:30pm (GMT). The first session in this year’s ‘Doing Business with the CDB’ seminar will cover opportunities in Infrastructure, Energy and Environment. This event series provides insights on CDB’s key sector plans, a forward look on their business pipelines and opportunities, and an update on CDB’s strategic direction.  

NEW: 29th November: Doing Business with the Caribbean Development Bank – Session Two Virtual event: 3:00 to 4:30pm (GMT). The second session in this year’s ‘Doing Business with the CDB’ seminar will cover opportunities in Education, Social, Trade and governance, whilst also providing insights on key sector plans and opportunities for UK Business.  

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