Ambassador Davidson’s visit to San Pedro Sula underscores the value the United Kingdom attaches to its longstanding and close relationship with Honduras and its industrial capital, where we have significant and growing interests. During her visit Ambassador Davidson met with the President of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Cortes, Mr Emin Jorge Abufele; the Manager of the regional office of FIDE, Mrs Nora Turcios; and the President of the National Brewery, SAB-Miller, Mr Boyce Lloyd, amongst other contacts.
Ambassador Davidson congratulated the private sector and government for working together on improving the business climate, which saw Honduras rising five positions in the World Bank’s Doing Business ranking for 2016. Development of more reforms would be a boon for the Honduran economy, including tackling insecurity, easier taxation guidance and responsible environmental stewardship. Ambassador Davidson also welcomed Honduras’ efforts to achieve a customs union with Guatemala, and called on both countries to proceed without delay with the legal framework to secure its implementation.
During the first quarter of 2016 the British Embassy will implement a series of projects aimed at strengthening the UK – Honduras economic relationship. Amongst these, we will run a seminar with government and the private sector to tackle contraband; and finance a series of guides and workshops to improve the utilization of the EU-Central America Association Agreement. According to official UK Government statistics, Honduras exported US$160 million in goods to the UK in 2015, 67% more than in the previous year. Total commerce between the UK and Honduras grew more than 60% in the same period.
Ambassador Davidson’s visit to San Pedro Sula was preceded by a full day of political appointments in Tegucigalpa, including a meeting with the new Governor of the Central Bank, Mr Manuel Bautista, to underline the UK’s role as a global leader in financial services and banking products.