British Business Embassy launches to champion UK investment
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A new initiative aimed at bringing new investment to the UK has been launched on the eve of the London Olympics opening ceremony.
The British Business Embassy, which consists of 4,000 world leaders, policy makers and investors, has been unveiled in London.
A series of trade and investment events will be held over the course of the Olympics to champion the UK to inward investors.
In line with the start of the British Business Embassy, UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) expects to announce deals and projects in the UK worth £1 billion during the summer.
Already announcements have been made involving a £4.5 billion investment in the intercity express programme, creating a reported 900 jobs, and plans to boost renewable energy that is said to see £25 billion of new investment in the economy over the next few years.
Deputy prime minister Nick Clegg says, 'Britain needs and must cultivate an investor-friendly economy. It's not just for us but about a shared prosperity - mutual business deals globally.
'Every deal counts, but we want to be bold, we need to think big, and that's why [the investment] it is such welcome news.'
The first event of the British Business Embassy will be the Government's Global Investment Conference. Speakers at the event include International Monetary Fund managing director Christine Lagarde and Bank of England Governor Mervyn King.
Business leaders such as Google's Eric Schmidt and ARM's Warren East are also scheduled to speak.
Business secretary Vince Cable says that beyond the Olympics being a sporting event, it also presents the opportunity to promote the 'best of British' industry and make the most of the UK's 'openness' to foreign trade and investment.
He adds, 'In these difficult economic times we also need to redouble global efforts to build a genuinely open and competitive international trading environment.'
If the trade agreements currently under discussion are realised, Cable says that Europe's GDP would be boosted by 2.2 per cent and two million jobs would be created.