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UK Trade and Investment

House of Lords written question – answered on 29th November 2011.

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Photo of Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne Liberal Democrat

To ask Her Majesty's Government what formal process they undertook to decide their 20 priority high-growth and emerging markets in their five-year strategy Britain Open for Business.

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Green of Hurstpierpoint on 15 September (WA 92), what is their "well established set of criteria" for allocating resources to overseas markets.

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have decided on the exact level of additional personnel and finance resources they will allocate to the 20 priority high-growth and emerging markets identified in their five-year strategy Britain Open for Business.

Photo of Lord Green of Hurstpierpoint Lord Green of Hurstpierpoint The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, The Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

The 20 priority high-growth markets identified in Britain Open for Business were identified by analysis undertaken by UK Trade and Investment, working with the FCO, using criteria including:

market size and potential for growth;the Government's assessment of their strategic political and economic importance; an assessment of the security situation;strength of scientific, technical and research base;performance of UK businesses relative to competitors;market match with UK capability, and the presence of active local partners keen to strengthen trading links with the UK.

These criteria enabled us to assess the importance of a market, the potential for growth, and the need for the Government to help British business interests.

The strategy for UKTI's overseas footprint is then determined by this assessment, and also by:

the demand for our services from UK businesses;an evaluation of the productivity of our teams;how we can deliver more through private sector partners, such as the China-Britain Business Council, the UK-India Business Council, and the UK-ASEAN Business Council, which is currently being established; andthe network shift of FCO resources to emerging powers announced by the Foreign Secretary in May 2011 which will include: strengthening front-line staff in China by up to 50, and in India by 30; a substantial expansion in Brazil, Turkey, Mexico and Indonesia; and additional staff in a number of other emerging powers.

My right honourable friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer has today announced that UKTI will double to 50,000 the number of companies it helps to export each year. A very substantial proportion of these will be trading with the top 20 growth markets. UKTI will plan to focus sufficient resources on these markets in order to deliver on this ambition.

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