Vietnam-UK Network Annual Dinner at House of Lords

Vietnam-UK Network’s Annual Dinner on 15 January, in The Cholmondeley Room, House of Lords was attended by over 100 senior business executives, members of parliament, educationalist and government official, all with a significant interest in the business and bi lateral relationship with Vietnam.
After introducing our host, Lord Dholakia, Deputy Leader of the Lib-Dems in the Lords, Chairman Warwick Morris highlighted the presence of our special guest, Conor Burns, Minister of State for trade and Investment, Sean Bratches, MD of Formula 1, HE the Ambassador of Vietnam Mr Tran Ngoc An, the presence of several Members from both Houses.
After Lord Dholakia’s welcome to the House and words of support to the relationship and the Network, lunch was served. Sean Bratches gave an enlightening and amusing speech about Formula 1’s approach to extending the annual race calendar and importantly the inclusion of a Grand Prix in Hanoi this coming April.
HE Ambassador An spoke of the impressive increase in bilateral business, including some investment from Vietnam to the UK, as well as progress on the FTA with the EU. He emphasised the opportunity, once the agreement has been ratified by the EU, for British business with a 90% reduction in tariffs phasing in over the early implementation of the agreement. He expressed his confidence that Vietnam would conclude a bilateral FTA agreement after BREXIT on the same terms.
Vice Chairman Paul Smith spoke of the huge opportunity for British Business with the adoption of a technology led economic strategy in Vietnam. Significant opportunity exists across manufacturing, water and waste processing, education and infrastructure.
Thanks to Vietnam Airlines’ generosity, a draw was held, and one lucky winner was presented with two return tickets to Vietnam. Rounding off the Dinner Chairman Warwick reminded those present that the Network depended on sponsors for support to enable it to carry out its activities in a wide range of fields. He hoped more people and companies would come forward to assist.