GULF OPPORTUNITIES $30bn per year
UK-Qatar trade strengthened
The UK and Qatar have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that will help strengthen the existing strong and historic trade relations between the two countries.
Mark Prisk, the Minister for Business and Enterprise, and the Qatari Minister of Business and Trade H.E. Sheikh Jassem Bin Abdulaziz Bin Jassem Al-Thani signed the MOU at Buckingham Palace. Prisk said: “This new understanding between the UK and Qatar will mean stronger, deeper relations between our two countries. Our bilateral trade has more than doubled in recent years and our aim is to drive forward this momentum and elevate our trading partnership to the next level. We are focusing relentlessly on promoting the UK as a place to invest and today’s agreement signals a significant step forward.”
Opportunities in the fields of energy, education, banking and financial services, construction, defence, sports and culture have already been identified and bilateral trade has increased to £2.2bn in the last five years.
A report by UK Trade & Investment, entitled Rising to the Challenge, highlights the focus on trading relations with the Gulf Cooperation Council states, and emphasises that potential sports opportunities in the region are valued at around $30bn per year. The report also highlights the expertise of UK firms in areas such as event management and sport, leaving them well placed to take advantage of future opportunities.
SIR ANDREW CAHN STEPS DOWN
(Photo of Sir Andrew Cahn)
The chief executive of UK Trade & Investment, Sir Andrew Cahn, stepped down from his role at the beginning of January. He joined UK Trade & Investment in March 2006 and set it a target to become the world’s best trade promotion organisation agency.
This was realised in November 2010 when UK Trade & Investment was acclaimed as the best trade promotion agency in the developed world by the World Trade Promotion Organization.
Prime Minister David Cameron said: “Sir Andrew has been a wonderful chief executive of UK Trade & Investment and a fantastic ambassador for the UK. He has been central to the Government’s efforts to make Britain an attractive place to invest and to sell Britain to the world.”
Business Secretary Dr Vince Cable said: “I would like to thank Sir Andrew for his contribution to UK Trade & Investment. He understands the needs of business and has worked hard to promote the benefits of exporting to British companies, as well as selling the many benefits of Britain abroad.”
Foreign Secretary William Hague added: “Sir Andrew has made a great contribution at the highest levels of Government. He has transformed UK Trade & Investment into a department that is recognised internationally as the world’s best trade promotion organisation.”
UK Trade & Investment’s deputy chief executive Susan Haird will act as interim CEO until a permanent successor is found.
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