How the North East is supporting the national drive to make the UK the place to live, work and invest
According to the Department for International Trade (DIT), the UK is the number one place for foreign direct investment (FDI) in Europe.
It’s no surprise when you consider the skills base available and the types of industries being invested in, many of which are thriving.
Take advanced manufacturing, automotive and offshore energy – three areas of Government focus and three areas that are powering the economy, particularly where I’m based in the North East of England.
Many more industries also continue to expand. The DIT’s report outlining Inward Investment Results 2016-17 shows that the business and consumer services sector has created and safeguarded 14,956 jobs, and financial services 11,508 jobs, all thanks to FDI.
These are just a few examples of industries in which the UK is performing strongly.
Making the UK’s pitch a compelling one
To continue this success, it’s imperative we continue to market the UK globally.
A key calendar date for anyone involved in inward investment activities, especially relating to property investment, is MIPIM UK, the UK’s largest exhibition for property professionals.
Over 3000 investors, developers, and representatives of financial institutions will attend this event at London Olympia from 18 to 19 October, which is designed to promote the wide range of real estate available to invest in across Britain.
Influential bankers and investors from countries including China, Canada, France, Hong Kong, and South Africa, among others will attend the conference, making it a key destination for anyone wanting to showcase property development opportunities and assets to an overseas market.
A key part of this autumn’s event will be a series of open door investor summits, focused on topics including the state of the global investment market, the state of the UK market and the residential, retail and logistics sectors. The latest developments in UK policy and the opportunities that exist in the regions will also be discussed.
Invest North East England will be attending MIPIM with a range of local authority and private sector partners.
Ensuring we promote the region and make connections with top overseas and UK investors and developers will be our core focus.
One of the diverse opportunities we’ll be promoting on our stand, an impressive array of city centre mixed-use regeneration schemes and edge of town business park developments, is the 150 ha International Advanced Manufacturing Park, immediately adjacent to Nissan’s huge factory in Sunderland. This £300m scheme will create up to 260,000m² of new manufacturing and R+D space.
As MIPIM UK is aimed at the property industry, it’s not the richest territory for unearthing end users and other more traditional ‘green field’ inward investors. Having said this, at last year’s event Invest North East England unearthed a fantastic potential lead during a conversation in a lift at the hotel we were staying in (a mile away from Olympia). This probably says more about the draw of London and being in the right place at the right time more than anything else. However, it is important to participate in such a large showcase of UK opportunities as without investment in key development sites, we would struggle to find locations for new inward investors coming to the UK.
Ultimately MIPIM UK is a crucial opportunity for the UK to display its unique selling points and show why we are world leaders in so many industries. From our skills base, to our cost competiveness right through to our physical assets, we’re looking forward to talking our inward investment opportunities up and working with other regions and inward investment experts to do so.
If you are interested in attending MIPIM visit the site here and make sure you visit us on stand C11 and enjoy some famous North East hospitality at our drinks reception from 15:30 on Wednesday 18th!
*Words by Guy Currey, director of Invest North East England *