BEI Weekly Update — 4th June 2021

Dear Members and Friends,

This week, the challenges and costs of recovering lost learning caused by the pandemic in the UK were in the spotlight. This is an issue that every country in the world is currently facing and is one that our Education Working Group has been actively engaged upon. Later this month, they will be launching an updated version of their report ‘Recover Learning, Rebuild Education’, which sets out the challenges being faced and detailed examples of how their expertise can help countries around the world.

This week also saw the release of a fascinating report by our sister company, the British Foreign Policy Group — ‘Swing Voters and the Electoral Significance of Foreign Aid: A Study in Conservative-Lib Dem Marginals’. The report is focused on public opinion in 30 seats in England, which are closely contested between the Conservative Party and the Liberal Democrats. The report highlights that although Britons in Conservative-Lib Dem marginal seats largely support the decision to temporarily reduce international development spending, they also recognise the moral and strategic value of the UK’s aid investments. The enduring political commitment over the past decade to remain one of the world’s leading aid donors has formalised and embedded this issue within the public consciousness. You can access a copy of the report here

This week we spent our time preparing for the launch of our ‘Meet the Ambassadors’ series, which kicks off on June 8th, with events covering Central Asia and South Caucasus and Francophone Africa.

Central Asia and South Caucasus: We will be joined by British Ambassadors to Georgia, Mongolia, Turkmenistan and Armenia, and the Deputy Ambassador to Uzbekistan. There are opportunities for British companies in sectors including infrastructure, education, healthcare, mining, technology and alternative energy.

Francophone Africa has traditionally been perceived as challenging for UK investors, but that is rapidly changing. We will be joined by our Ambassadors from Senegal, Cote D’Ivoire, Guinea and Mauritania who will share insights on their respective countries as well sectors of opportunities in a region experiencing strong economic growth and seen as a gateway to the Central African Monetary Union Economic Area.

On June 10th, we will hear from the High Commissioners from Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda discussing East Africa — a region with high growth potential and a key focus for the UK. Across East Africa, there are significant opportunities in infrastructure, education, financial services, and agri-business.

On June 10th we will also focus on South East Europe, as we hear from H.E. Matt Field, British Ambassador to Bosnia and Herzegovina, who leads on trade issues among the Western Balkans Ambassadors (a region that includes Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, and Kosovo); and H.E. Sian MacLeod, British Ambassador to Serbia. The region has strong growth potential, rich energy resources and technological innovation. For UK businesses, there are opportunities in helping improve transport infrastructure, construction, technology, education, and tourism.

Outside of the series, we have one additional event next week. On 9th June, we will host an event on ‘Doing Business in Pakistan’, in collaboration with the Pakistan Britain Business Council, Pakistan High Commission London, the British Deputy High Commission Karachi and the KPK Board of Investment and Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP). Pakistan’s unique geo-strategic location, skilled human resources and untapped growth potential offer huge opportunities giving access to wider Asian markets.

Next week will also see the UK Government hosting the G7 in Cornwall. As the world struggles with the recovery from the pandemic, it will be interesting to see how this group sets the tone and direction around the potential for a truly global approach and response to the challenges of our time including climate change and the pandemic. Infrastructure remains the backbone of recovery and there needs to be additional focus on recovering learning loss and support the most poverty stricken.

It also looks, as we head into next week, that the weather will continue to be favourable, so I look forward to beautiful press coverage of the Cornish Coast, but will view it with some envy from my home office in South East London.

With Best Wishes

Derrick Sanyahumbi
Chief Executive Officer
British Expertise International

Don’t forget…

See our full events programme here, and to enquire about becoming a member of BEI, register your interest here.

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Upcoming Events

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*.

8th June ‘Meet the British Ambassadors’ Central Asia & South Caucasus

8th June‘Meet the British Ambassadors’ Francophone Africa

9th June Doing Business in Pakistan

10th June‘Meet the British Ambassadors’ East Africa

10th June‘Meet the British Ambassadors’ South-East Europe

15th June‘Meet the British Ambassadors’ Middle East

15th June‘Meet the British Ambassadors’ West Africa

15th June‘Meet the British Ambassadors’ Latin America

16th June‘Meet the British Ambassadors’ South Asia

16th June‘Meet the British Ambassadors’ Southern Africa

17th June — ‘Meet the British Ambassadors’ South-East Asia

17th June‘Meet the British Ambassadors’ North Africa

17th June‘Meet the British Ambassadors’ The Caribbean

22nd June — Closed Roundtable Discussion with Trade Envoy Mark Menzies MP

24th June — Closed Roundtable Discussion with Trade Envoy Mark Menzies MP

External News & Events

8th June — The British-Serbian Chamber of Commerce will host the 4th Serbian Public Private Partnership Conference. Register for your place now.

8th June — BSCC will participate in the Hull and Humber Chamber of Commerce’s business week event on renewables opportunities. Follow this link to read more and register for your place at the business week.

8th June — Join SBJBC in an engaging webinar showcasing: Technology and Digital Cooperation Opportunities at NEOM & THE LINE. Interactive panels will follow on opportunities for innovative UK and Saudi companies to partner on the technology infrastructure required for this visionary project.

9th — 10th June — UK Export Finance will be hosting a Supplier Fair: Agricultural Development in Africa for UK exporters, covering the various sustainable food production projects across Africa.

10th June — The Department for International Trade (DIT) will be hosting a webinar on Procurement with the World Bank, to discuss World Bank Group procurement procedures, upcoming opportunities, and best-practice.

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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