The Department of International Trade has announced the creation of the advisory body to help boost investment to the UK from overseas. Made up of private sector businessmen and businesswomen, it will meet at least twice a year to provide strategic advice to ministers.
Officials say among the council’s aims will be to advise how the UK and make regulatory changes to improve the attractiveness of the UK for foreign investors.
It is hoped to make the most of the UK’s freedom outside the EU, the body will help Britain turbocharge its recovery from the pandemic.
International Trade Secretary Liz Truss said: ”Alongside the Office for Investment, this Investment Council led by Minister Grimstone is a major leap towards ensuring foreign investors are heard and fostering a business environment that is fair and drives innovation and economic growth across the UK.
“Together with our recently established Trade and Investment Hubs, the Investment Council and the Office for Investment signal to our global partners that the UK is ready and open for business as an independent trading nation.”
In total 40 business leaders will advise ministers on how to keep the UK a competitive country for investment.
Representatives from aviation manufacture Airbus, banking firms HSBC and Santander, and food and beverage company Kraft Heinz all sit on the council.
Until January the UK was bound by EU rules and regulations.
Since leaving the transition period Britain has taken back control of setting its own legislation.
It means Britain can adapt its rules to help boost investment from abroad.
As well as promoting Brexit-Britain, the council will also look to best Boris Johnson’s levelling up agenda.
The Prime Minister has made levelling up a priority of his premiership, looking to help boost economic growth and prosperity across the whole of the UK.
The council aims to drive investment into priority areas and sectors to help Mr Johnson realise his goal.
Meetings of the group will be chaired by Investment Minister Gerry Grimstone.
The minister said: “Investment sits at the heart of our economic recovery.
Italian MEP apologises to Brexiteers in farewell EU debate [WATCH]
POLL: Would you vote for Brexit if referendum was today? [VOTE]
EU rounds on UK with punishment threats as MEPs vote on deal [UPDATE]
“It drives jobs, innovation, and helps to level up the whole of the UK.
“The Investment Council will deliver the expertise of influential global investors right to the heart of Government, offering invaluable private sector insight on how we can make the UK the best place to invest as we build back better, and stronger, from Covid-19.”
Giving her backing to the new council, President Kraft Heinz Northern Europe, Jojo de Noronha said: “I am hugely supportive of the purpose behind the UK Investment Council.
“With three manufacturing sites in the UK, including Europe’s largest food factory based in Wigan, we continue to make multi-million-pound investments in state-of-the-art manufacturing to support our growth as well as our Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance commitments.
“I believe we can make a valued contribution to ensuring that investment in the UK drives growth and economic opportunity.”
Marc Waters, Managing Director for Hewlett Packard Enterprise in the UK, Ireland, Middle East and Africa – who will also sit on the council – added: “At this pivotal moment for the UK’s future in the global economy, the need for sustainable inward investment is more important than ever.
“It is positive to see Government increasing focus on ensuring the UK maintains its competitive advantages in the investment landscape.
“I look forward to working with this diverse group of business leaders to support Government efforts to bolster UK PLC.”