Business Secretary visits south-east Asia to strengthen trade relationship
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Issued on 31 October 2011
The Business Secretary, Vince Cable, begins a week long visit
to South East Asia today to deepen trade ties and open up further
opportunities for British companies to invest in this dynamic region
and support UK growth.
Starting in Singapore, one of the UK’s largest export markets, and
moving on to two significant emerging markets in Indonesia and Vietnam,
Vince Cable will be meeting with British businesses and ministerial
counterparts to improve market access, agree further collaboration in
areas of British expertise such as research and development, and
promote the UK as a leading destination for foreign investment.
Vince Cable said:
”Strong trade relationships are a key element of the govt's growth plan
as we build a more balanced economy based on investment and exports.
The markets that I'm visiting in South East Asia are all enjoying
impressive growth rates and offer good investment and export
opportunities for British businesses both large and small. I hope that
my visit will cement the UK's position as a serious presence in the
In Singapore, the Business Secretary will:
Sign a Memorandum of Understanding with
Singapore Minister for Trade and Industry Mr Lim Hng Kiang to launch
the UK-Singapore Business Partnership. This will provide a framework to
maximise business opportunities, increase co-operation on R&D
and share best practice.
Attend the signing of a Memorandum of
Understanding between the National University of Singapore and the
London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. This will create a new
regional hub for public health research, training and innovation.
Deliver a speech at the Singapore Energy
summit to promote the UK’s reputation as a business partner for
tackling climate change.
In Indonesia, the Business Secretary will:
Take part in the topping out ceremony of
World Trade Centre 11, designed and developed in partnership by British
and Indonesian companies. It is the first certified green building in
Jakarta’s Central Business District.
Attend a Higher Education policy
dialogue to encourage greater research cooperation between the UK and
Announce the establishment of the UK
ASEAN Business Council, to help increase our levels of trade with ASEAN
markets and encourage businesses of all sizes to develop business in
In Vietnam, the Secretary of State will:
Attend a reception to mark the
inauguration of direct flights between the UK and Vietnam starting in
December. This will provide a significant boost to trade, making it
easier for Vietnamese and British companies to do business with each
other and strengthening our educational and cultural links.
Attend an event to mark the successful
launch of Premier Oil’s ‘First Oil Project, the largest British-led
investment in Vietnam with a value of almost £800 million.
Open the fifth JETCO (Joint Economic and
Trade Committee) meeting in Hanoi to address ongoing market access
issues and trade barriers. Previous meetings have produced valuable
outcomes such as direct flights, reduced tariffs and improved visa
1. The visit will take place on the following dates:
Singapore 31 October.
Indonesia 1-2 November.
Vietnam 2- 4 November.
2. Background information on Singapore:
· Singapore is the UK’s largest trading partner in South-East Asia
(Singapore accounts for two thirds of UK exports to the region) and one
of its largest export markets outside Europe.
· In 2010 Singapore was the UK's 19th largest goods export market
(£3.29billion - a 15% increase on 2009) and the 22nd largest for
imports (£3.99billion - an increase of 18% on 2009).
· Over 700 British companies are based in Singapore. The vast majority
of whom run their regional operations from the City state. Shell
Celebrating 120 years in Singapore
3. Background information on Indonesia
· Trade between UK and Indonesia valued at £1.7 billion in 2010.
Balance very much in Indonesia’s favour (UK exports to Indonesia
£436million, Indonesia exports to UK £1.3 billion).
· UK exports to Indonesia increased by 25% year on year in 2010, and
Indonesia’s exports to the UK increased by 13% in the same period.
Bilateral trade now valued at £1.7bn.
· UK one of the largest investors in Indonesia. This includes the oil
and gas sector, financial services, pharmaceutical, construction and
4. Background information on Vietnam
· UK is the third largest investor in Vietnam with 138 ongoing
investments worth US$2.2bn in 2010, including oil and financial
· Export led economic growth averaging 7% over the past decade and the
rate is just second only to China. Most analysts expect GDP growth of
6% in 2011.
· At £276.3m in 2010 UK exports of goods only to Vietnam
increased by 32% year on year. Imports of goods only from Vietnam were
worth £1.2b an increase of 15%.
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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2011-11-01 17:31:46 in Economic Articles