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"Upgrading the importance of trade" - PM

The Prime Minister has attended a UK Trade & Investment business summit and called for a big change in the country's approach to the importance of trade in foreign relations.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government


The Prime Minister has attended a UK Trade & Investment business summit and called for a big change in the country’s approach to the importance of trade in foreign relations.

Mr Cameron said the Government should be “messianic” in wanting to see free trade and open markets across the world and urged a “big step change in our approach to foreign and diplomatic relations in massively upgrading the importance of trade”.

The PM told the summit in central London that as well as pushing far harder on trade to attract inward investment, the Government was focusing on dealing with the deficit and wanted to make the country more business-friendly.

He said:

What we are discussing today is probably the most important subject facing this country because we are coming out of a very deep and difficult recession, growth is fragile, and it is absolutely vital for our country that we attract the maximum amount of inward investment and that we do everything we can to demonstrate that the British economy is open for business, open for trade, open for investment.

Earlier this month, Mr Cameron spoke to diplomats from the Foreign Office and called on them to use their skills and contacts to become “economic ambassadors for Britain” to help build our export-led growth.

UK Trade & Investment have also published their inward investment report today which shows that a record numbers of countries invested in the UK last year with inward investment generating 94,000 jobs.

Speeches and transcripts: Speech to UKTI business summit

Read more: PM calls on diplomats to “do more with less”

Read more: UK inward investment report 2009/2010

Published 14 July 2010