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Michael Fallon Eyes Kazakh Trade Deals

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Michael Fallon Eyes Kazakh Trade Deals

Post  Panda on Sun 17 Feb - 14:30

Michael Fallon Eyes £65bn Kazakh Trade Deals

The Business Minister will target the deepening of trade
ties to bolster the UK economy, Sky News understands.

5:52pm UK,
Saturday 16 February 2013

The Business Minister will fly to Kazakhstan to bolster

  • By Mark Kleinman, City Editor

    Michael Fallon, the Business Minister, will fly to Kazakhstan on
    Sunday in an attempt to help British companies win a share of $100bn (£65bn) in
    new trade deals.

    Mr Fallon, who was promoted in last autumn's Cabinet reshuffle, will visit
    resource-rich Kazakhstan aiming to bang the drum for companies with a big
    presence there, including BG Group, the gas producer, and Rio Tinto, the mining

    Trade ties between Britain and Kazakhstan are relatively modest in scale,
    with UK exports to Kazakhstan in 2011 standing at £530m, and UK imports just

    British companies have won $7bn (£4.5bn) in contracts in Kazakhstan in the
    last ten years, but Mr Fallon believes the opportunity is much more substantial
    than that, with up to 15 times that sum available in contracts during the next

    "The French and the Germans are already there, on the ground, and we have to
    be relentless in pursuing opportunities for British trade," he said.

    His trip will be the first by a business minister since the last general
    election to the central Asian country.

    During talks with ministers and government officials, Mr Fallon is also
    expected to discuss the operations of GlaxoSmithKline and HSBC, which also have
    a presence in Kazakhstan.

    Tens of millions of Britons do already have an exposure to the Kazakh economy
    through investments made by pension funds in companies such as ENRC, the
    FTSE-100 miner.

    Mr Fallon's trip to Kazakhstan will come in the same week that David Cameron
    travels to India accompanied by the biggest-ever business delegation to visit
    the country.

    The Prime Minister is expected to promote access to the vast Indian market
    for British retailers as well as discuss a string of major defence and aerospace

    His visit takes place amid deepening concerns that the UK's trade ties with
    India are faltering, placing the Coalition's target of doubling trade by 2015 in
    Boris visited India very recently and came back with a Contract for 2 Indian Films to be made in Britain, obviously spurred Cameron and the Trade Minister into action.
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