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British investors, in the largest UK commercial mission to Romania since the ’89 Revolution

Starting today and until tomorrow, March 10, a trade delegation of around 50 British businesses are in Bucharest for an intensive round of seminars, meetings and networking opportunities.

According to a press release, this ‘GREAT Mega Mission’ is a milestone event: the largest UK commercial delegation to Romania since the Revolution 25 years ago, respectively. The GREAT Mega Mission will aim to boost bilateral trade, as part of UK Trade and Investment’s (UKTI) efforts to double UK trade with Central and Eastern Europe by 2020.

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The Rt. Hon. Brian Wilson, the Prime Minister’s Business Ambassador and a former UK government minister, will lead the delegation. Brian Wilson is a former MP and remains a member of the Privy Council which is made up of senior serving and former politicians.

“In sectors such as Nuclear Energy, Oil & Gas, Transport Infrastructure and Water & Environment we believe the necessary ingredients are in place for British companies to win even more business in Romania. These four sectors form the primary focus of the Mega Mission,” British ambassador to Romania Paul Brummell officially posts on Foreign Commonwealth Office (FCO) blog.

According to him, there are two main reasons for this optimism. “First, all four sectors are on the cusp of major modernisation, fueled by the GBP 130 billion in EU funding that will be channeled into Central & Eastern Europe between 2014 and 2020, 11 percent more than the 2007-13 period. The biggest share will go to the Environment and Transport sectors (over 20 percent each). EUR 9 billion is available for infrastructure projects in Romania alone, for example, an unprecedented level of investment that should have a transformative impact. 2015 will be a key year in terms of deciding how this money will be spent. Second, these are sectors in which British industry is recognised as a global leader and where British expertise could add huge value to Romania. It is therefore in the interests of both countries that British industry plays a pivotal role in this modernisation process,” the blog post shows.

British diplomat considers in the press release that Romania’s geographical position is strategic in the region, a situation that the country can benefit. Also, the human capital potential is extremely high, currently in high demand areas – engineering, IT, energy.

According to FCO data, bilateral trade between Romania and the UK reached EUR 3 billion in 2014; British investment in Romania currently amounts to EUR 6.5 billion. The second and final leg of the UK trade delegation is in Sofia, Bulgaria on 11 and 12 March.

About Anca Bernovici