Visit to Westminster

Olivier Levy
12 March 2024 by
Olivier Levy

The Chamber hosted a delegation of Members to meet senior Ministers, MPs and diplomats in London to discuss EU-UK relations, trade, investment and several other issues.

Our meetings discussed the options for growth, dialogue, cooperation and convergence between the EU and UK, confirming the need to increase dialogue, on both sides of the Channel, in order for policymakers to maximise the benefits of the TCA for all.

The Visit to Westminster kicked off with a dinner with the First Secretary of Belgium to the United Kingdom, Mr Benjamin Muylaert-Gelein, to highlight Belgium’s eagerness to cooperate with the UK on defining issues such as trade, net-zero, energy, competitiveness, industry, research, and security and defence.

Our guests noted the progress emanating from the Windsor Framework and the UK’s re-accession to Horizon Europe, encouraging more cooperation and partnerships between the UK, EU and Belgium.

Early the next morning, the BritCham delegation met the Rt Hon Greg Hands MP, Minister of State for Trade Policy.

The conversation focused on how removing obstacles to trade can be mutually beneficial for businesses and consumers on both sides of the Channel

At the EU Delegation to the UK, Deputy Ambassador Nicole Mannion and officials of the European Commission and EEAS took questions on what might be possible after the upcoming EU and UK elections, especially regarding the upcoming 2025 review of the implementation of the TCA.

Labour Shadow Ministers Nick Thomas-Symonds, Shadow Minister Without Portfolio, and Gareth Thomas MP, Shadow Minister for Trade, delved into the movement of goods, people and services across borders, and how the upcoming elections could encourage new trade dynamics. 

In the Houses of Parliament, the BritCham delegation met Lord Peter Rickets, Baroness (and former HR/VP) Catherine Ashton, and the European Affairs Committee, to discuss restoring trust between the EU and UK and creating mechanisms to manage regulatory divergence.

Sir Oliver Heald, Co-Chair of the EU-UK Parliamentary Partnership Assembly, discussed TCA governance structures, and how the EU and UK could improve cooperation in security and defence.

During a session focused on clean energy infrastructure on joint EU-UK cooperation on Net Zero, the BritCham delegation met SNP MPs Alyn Smith and Douglas Chapman to emphasise the need for energy linkages and joint ventures in the North Sea.

Finally, we were honoured to meet Stephen Hammond MP, a member of the Financial Services Committee, capping of a fantastic day of fruitful discussion on EU-UK trade, mobility, investment, opportunities and hindrances with so many distinguished policymakers.

in News