The event took place on Tuesday 8 October on Marylebone Campus and was organised by the Westminster Development Policy Network as part of the Westminster Economics Research Seminar Series.
The event was co-organised by Dr Karen Jackson, Assistant Head of School from the School of Organisations, Economy and Society, alongside Dr Serena Masino, Lecturer in International Development and Economics.
Two internationally renowned speakers were invited to speak at the event, Dr Dirk Willem te Velde from the Overseas Development Institute (OTI) and Dr Peter Holmes from the University of Sussex, to discuss the future of UK trade and investment with China and Africa.
During the event, the speakers explored the ongoing debate around the vision of a post-Brexit ‘Global Britain’, with a particular focus on its ties with external partners across Africa and China.
Dr Dirk Willem te Velde’s presentation highlighted that the UK needs to roll over GSP/EBA duty-free quota-free access for least developed countries in the UK market.
Meanwhile, Dr Holmes highlighted China’s interest in a shallow/tariff-only Free Trade Agreement (FTA). He said that while China is likely to be willing to talk about a shallow FTA with the UK, he questioned what the UK could offer in return for cars and services if tariffs are mostly zero without a deal.
Speaking about the event, Dr Karen Jackson said: “This was a great opportunity to hear from leading experts who are both actively engaging with the UK government on these issues.
On the day of the event itself, the UK government has revised its Most-Favoured Nation (MFN) tariff schedule in case of a no-deal Brexit; therefore, the speakers were able to reflect on what this means for the LDCs.”