On Tuesday 11th July Adam asked the Foreign and Commonwealth Office for an update on what the Government is doing to strengthen Britain’s diplomatic relations with foreign countries (12:28:50 – 12:29:30):
Foreign and Commonwealth Questions, 11th July:
Adam Afriyie (Windsor, Conservative): It is striking that Commonwealth countries trade 25% more with each other at a cost that is 19% lower than with non-Commonwealth countries. Does the Minister agree that, as we leave the EU, we have a great opportunity to boost our mutual trade and security interests by enhancing our diplomatic relations with Ghana and other Commonwealth countries?
Rory Stewart MP (Minister for Africa): I pay tribute to my hon. Friend, who is our Trade Envoy to Ghana. Ghana is one of the most impressive recent developments in Africa, with three recent transitions of democratic power and a rapidly growing economy. It is a huge example of how the Commonwealth can become one of the great success stories of Britain’s next five years, as we move towards the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.
The MP for the Windsor constituency, Adam Afriyie, said:
“It is fantastic news to hear straight from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office themselves that they are using every opportunity as we leave the EU to build on Britain’s prominent reputation as an open and outward facing country.
“I want us to highlight the new international opportunities available to us as we leave the EU and dispel the unfounded fear-mongering by those who want to undermine our prospects in the vain hope that the referendum result will be overturned. We are leaving the Single Market, Customs Union and European Court of Justice’s jurisdiction, so let’s work on making the best of our trading strengths and connections abroad.
“Without taking back control we will be unable to sign free trade agreements with the rapidly growing economies of Africa and Asia. Many of these countries with whom we alone in the EU have strong historical ties to.
“I have personally accompanied the Foreign Secretary on trips to Ghana, so I am acutely aware of his passion to represent Britain on the international stage. Only last week figures showed that Foreign Direct Investment to the UK was continuing to soar after the Brexit vote. I commend his whole department for the work they are doing in ensuring that the UK remains a key player on the global stage.”
- Adam Afriyie is the Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Ghana.
- He has a strong background in science, technology and innovation.
- He is currently Chairman of the Fintech APPG, Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST) and President of the Conservative Technology Forum (CTF).
- He was shadow Minister for Science from 2007-2010 and has a background in the information services and technology sector.