In the context of ever finite fossil energy resources and the proactive approach of governments to collaborate and coordinate activities in the energy sector, UK Trade & Investment Paris organised a very successful Franco-British event on offshore wind energy on 6 December 2012.
A strong message from the UK government
This is a sector that carries its own feasibility issues and a strong message of support from the UK government was welcomed by the 200 French and British participants. The participants comprised of all the leading British and French developers, original equipment manufacturers, supply chain companies and public administrations.
UKTI chose 9 key speakers across UK and French government Ministries (DECC, UK Trade & Investment), trade associations (Renewable UK, France Energie Eolienne, Syndicat des Energies Renouvelables) and industrial consortia (Ailes Marines) to deliver keynote presentations in the morning.
Influencing French investors to the UK
These were aimed at influencing French investors to the UK and inciting British companies to win new business in France. The afternoon was taken up by very carefully organised pre-selected Business to Business meetings.
These meetings were the foundations of very promising partnerships between French and British companies. A few of the outcomes include an increased enthusiasm for this sector from newcomers, a reassurance for existing players that the UK government is delivering clear signals of support through its recently released Energy bill, and finally new business relationships for the participants but also for the UKTI business development managers who are the client facing civil servants.