Press release: UK calls for emergency steel meeting granted

Business Secretary, Sajid Javid, has had his request for an emergency meeting with senior European ministers granted to discuss the pressures faced by the steel industry. After taking his concerns directly to Brussels, agreement has been reached that an emergency council will be held.

Following talks with Luxembourg, which holds the European Union (EU) presidency, it has been agreed that this will take place within the next 10 working days.

Business Secretary Sajid Javid said:

I have been lobbying member states and met European commissioners to drive up the importance of this issue. I have called for an urgent EU Council meeting on steel, and I am pleased the Luxembourg presidency has agreed that this will take place within the next 10 working days. I am determined this council leads to swift action, not just a talking shop.

This agreement came as the Business Secretary was meeting with a number of EU commissioners to drive home the current situation for the industry. The agreement was reached between the Business Secretary and Etienne Schneider, Deputy Prime Minister of Luxembourg. Details and timings will be confirmed when the Presidency formally announces the meeting in the coming days.

Mr Javid met Industry and Internal Market Commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska and Trade Commissioner Cecelia Malström.

The Secretary of State also raised steel within the wider context of the EU Commission’s work on the single market and industry with Vice-President Jyrki Katainen.

Notes to editors

  1. Further assistance for the industry was also announced by the Prime Minister that the UK is now expecting to have state aid approval to provide relief to Energy Intensive Industries (EIIs), specifically steel, from the cost of renewables policy by the end of this year. This means that the government will be providing relief to these sectors from the costs of the small feed in tariffs.
  2. It was also announced that further funds will be made available to commence compensation from the costs of the Renewables Obligation at the same time.
  3. These meetings and announcements are the latest steps the government has taken to help the steel sector, including paying over £50 million in compensation for energy costs to date.

Source Article from https://www.gov.uk/government/news/uk-calls-for-emergency-steel-meeting-granted

Press release: British holidaymakers close to a fairer deal on prices in Europe

The UK government has pressed for new EU reforms that could put a stop to holidaymakers being charged more for car hire, train travel and resort tickets when planning a holiday in Europe.

The proposal to tackle unfair price discrimination was published this afternoon (28 October 2015) as part of the European Commission’s Internal Market Strategy, which contains a package of positive measures that responds to UK calls for accelerated progress towards completing the single market.

This follows on from the news yesterday (27 October 2015) that the European Parliament voted in favour of British-backed proposals to scrap mobile roaming charges and boost protection for tourists.

Business Minister Baroness Neville-Rolfe said:

We have been calling for the EU to open up the single market and it’s encouraging to see this ambitious package that will bring real benefits for working people as well as new opportunities for British businesses. Having a British passport should not mean you get ripped off abroad or when shopping online, and the action to tackle this kind of discrimination is welcome. We hope the EU pushes this proposal through quickly.

I’m also pleased to see support for the sharing economy that should go some way in preventing innovative businesses being hit by kneejerk regulation.

The UK government has led the way in pushing for these reforms and will continue to press for further action, as more needs to be done to get the EU backing innovative businesses.

The proposed reforms would put an end to unfair price discrimination which prevents people in certain locations from taking advantage of the best prices for goods and services available to consumers in other EU countries. Recent examples including cases of international car rental companies offering services to consumers across the EU have shown British consumers being charged more than their European counterparts.

The strategy also includes a ‘services passport’ which will make it easier for businesses to start up in one EU country and do business in another. This means that British engineers and other highly-skilled professionals will finally be able to take full advantage of the single market.

There is also updated guidance on how governments should approach regulation of the sharing economy, in which the UK is a global leader. These technology-based business models help everyday entrepreneurs share and rent out their property, time and skills.

Further details on the measures:

  • the Services Passport will mean that once a business complies with certain regulations in one country, it will be able to demonstrate this compliance in all other member states without having to meet any additional requirements
  • new guidance on how to apply the Services Directive to the sharing economy should stop governments imposing damaging legislation on innovative businesses
  • a new framework will be created to assess the suitability of new and existing regulation governing the regulated professions, for example accountants and engineers, so that countries can’t use red tape to stop people offering services across borders
  • proposals for a more focused enforcement strategy should help bring about a culture change in the EU’s approach to regulation and its enforcement so that every country has to play by the rules

The UK government called for tough action on the single market in a document presented to Jyrki Katainen, EC Vice-President of Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, on 20 July 2015. The importance of ambitious reforms was also highlighted in a joint letter signed by the UK and 16 other countries to Elżbieta Bieńkowska, European Commissioner for Internal Market, on 17 September 2015.

Notes to editors:

  1. The document setting out the UK’s priorities for the single market is available online.

Source Article from https://www.gov.uk/government/news/british-holidaymakers-close-to-a-fairer-deal-on-prices-in-europe

Press release: Business Secretary to put steel top of Brussels agenda

Sajid Javid has been lobbying other member states to convince his EU counterparts that severe pressures on the steel sector across Europe needs urgent action.

At the same time, he is going to Brussels to raise UK concerns over unfair international trading with the EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström.

Mr Javid will also meet the Industry and Internal Market Commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska to ask her to bring forward a clear strategy to support industrial competitiveness which focuses on creating the right market framework by deepening the single market.

Business Secretary Sajid Javid said:

I want to see steel top of the EU agenda. We cannot stand by while the steel industry across Europe, not just in the UK, faces such unprecedented challenges. There are no straightforward solutions to the complex global challenges but the UK government wants to work with the EU and our European partners to do all we can to support our steel industry.

The Secretary of State will also raise steel within the wider context of the Commission’s work on the single market and industry with vice-president Jyrki Katainen.

Notes to editors

  1. These meetings are the latest steps the government has taken to help the steel sector, including paying over £50 million in compensation for energy costs to date.
  2. Sajid Javid has also had positive talks with the Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager on speeding up work to approve the UK’s Energy Intensive Industries compensation scheme.

Source Article from https://www.gov.uk/government/news/business-secretary-to-put-steel-top-of-brussels-agenda

Press release: UK confirmed as one of the top places in the world to do business

The World Bank Ease of Doing Business report released today (27 October 2015) places the UK as the sixth out of 189 countries, ahead of the US, Germany and Japan.

The UK government’s continued commitment to de-regulate, make it easier to start and grow a business and establish a competitive tax environment has pushed the UK up 2 places, from eighth last year.

Business Secretary Sajid Javid said:

The UK has once again climbed up the rankings and is one of the top places in the world to do business, getting closer to the government’s target of reaching the top 5. This is international recognition of the UK’s strong and stable business environment, competitiveness and entrepreneurial spirit. Our economy is now growing faster than any other G7 nation.

The government is taking steps to ensure that every part of Britain benefits from the growing economy and that everyone who works hard gets the opportunities they need to succeed.

Government action to improve the ease of doing business includes:

  • commitment to cut £10 billion of red tape in order to back British business and put resources to more productive use
  • cutting tax – at 20%, the UK already has the joint lowest corporate tax rate in the G20, but it will be cut further to 18% in 2020, making it the lowest in the G20
  • boosting skills and productivity by raising the quantity and quality of apprenticeships in England to 3 million starts by 2020
  • investing £6.9 billion in UK research infrastructure up to 2021 – improving knowledge, expertise and productivity
  • building stronger trading links with emerging markets, especially China, India and Brazil; and delivering a Europe that is more dynamic and outward focussed as part of our renegotiation

Notes to editors:

The full report and accompanying datasets are available.

Source Article from https://www.gov.uk/government/news/uk-confirmed-as-one-of-the-top-places-in-the-world-to-do-business

Press release: Steel industry offered additional time to meet European emissions regulations

The government has confirmed to the steel industry that it will be able to take advantage of special flexibilities to comply with new EU rules on emissions. These are now awaiting final approval.

Unnecessary ‘gold-plating’ of EU regulations is one of the top 5 issues raised with the government by the steel industry. The EU Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) could have added millions of pounds of additional costs to the industry in January 2016 at a time when it is already facing unprecedented global pressures. The UK pushed for transitional arrangements and derogations in the IED, and both will benefit the steel industry following detailed work between government and steel companies.

Business Secretary Sajid Javid said:

I am acutely aware of the challenges currently facing our steel industry and where the government can help support them we will.

We recognised the costs these regulations could have and are working with businesses to agree a flexible and common sense way forward that doesn’t damage our competitiveness.

Cutting red tape was one of the issues discussed at our recent steel summit and it is important that we are making progress quickly on it. I will also be going to Brussels tomorrow to make the case for firmer action on unfair trade.

Gareth Stace, Director of UK Steel said:

This is a good step in the right direction which will be welcomed by steel companies in Britain. It is one of a series of measures promised by government which are vital to maintain a viable future for the steel industry in the UK. The Secretary of State’s visit to Brussels will also hopefully result in speedier action to support the industry in the short term.

The IED places more stringent emissions requirements on industry from January 2016. However, as a result of UK lobbying, member states are able to designate specific plants to be granted an additional 4 and a half years to meet these more stringent emissions levels by incorporating them in the Transitional National Plan. The UK government has included various steel sites in the UK’s Transitional National Plan, which has now been submitted to the European Commission for approval.

The IED also places a duty on industry to use the best available technology in order to reduce emissions to air, water and land to improve public health and protect the environment. In cases, where the costs would be disproportionate to the benefits, the government can provide derogations at its discretion, based on the evidence submitted. The Environment Agency is close to finalising its permit application for Tata, which will then be subject to consultation, and National Resources Wales have agreed derogations at Port Talbot.

The government wants to hear about any other areas where the steel industry has concerns about gold plating and regulation. The competitiveness and productivity working group convened following the Steel Summit on 16 October 2015, and progressing work on IED relief was a key objective.

On Wednesday (27 October 2015), the Business Secretary will be holding high-level meetings with the European Commission to make the case for firmer action on unfair trade operations damaging the steel sector in the UK and across Europe.

Notes to editors

  1. On Friday 16 October 2015, the government held a high-level Steel Summit which led to the creation of 3 working groups to be chaired by ministers to urgently identify joint work in 3 key areas:
    • public procurement – the ambition is to drive up the number of contracts won by UK steel manufacturers in fair and open competition
    • international comparisons – to consider what lessons can be learned from other countries in the EU and beyond
    • competitiveness and productivity – to look at energy and environmental costs, business rates, regulation and what action industry can take to drive up their competitiveness including skills, training and maximising their assets

Source Article from https://www.gov.uk/government/news/steel-industry-offered-additional-time-to-meet-european-emissions-regulations

Press release: EU holiday boost to British tourists – cheaper holiday calls and tougher consumer protection

British holidaymakers will get a double boost as the EU gives its final approval to scrap mobile roaming charges and agrees tougher protection for travellers buying package holidays.

The European Parliament has today (27 October 2015) voted in favour of the British-backed proposals.

The new travel rules will extend existing consumer rights on package holidays to include travellers who buy holidays on the internet which look like packages and are marketed as packages. There will also be a clampdown on loopholes which can leave travellers out of pocket and stranded in far-away destinations if their airline goes bust.

The mobile roaming agreement means that from June 2017, additional charges will no longer apply within the EU for making calls, sending texts and using the internet.

Business Minister Baroness Neville-Rolfe said:

This is a double win for British holidaymakers who will soon benefit from cheaper calls and tougher consumer protection for their package holidays. It shows how the UK is working with the EU to get a better deal for British consumers and holidaymakers.

This EU agreement means that Brits who take their hard-earned holidays abroad will soon be better protected if they buy their travel, accommodation or car hire as part of a package, closing off loopholes and confusion. Today’s vote also means the end is in sight for astronomical bills that so many holidaymakers face after a trip to Europe if they need to use their mobile phones to keep in touch with loved ones back home.

This agreement will mean that the rules governing package holidays from the ‘90s will meet the demands of 21st century holidaymakers.

The new travel rules will:

  • make clearer what a ‘package holiday’ is, which will now include customised combinations of travel arrangements bought on the internet, and make it clear the protections offered to traditional ‘package’ travellers, often chosen in a brochure and bought in a travel agent, also apply to combined flight/hotel deals found on the internet

  • give clearer information to travellers on the sort of product they’re buying and the level of protection they get

  • introduce a new concept of ‘linked travel arrangements’ applying to looser combinations of travel services. Holidaymakers who are given the choice to buy accommodation or organise car hire after buying their flights, for example through low cost airline websites, will now be assured greater protection. Under the current rules, if the airline went bust, and the return flight was cancelled, the traveller would have to organise their own travel arrangements and wouldn’t be entitled to a refund on the original flight. But under the new rules, the tour provider will have to have compensation measures in place as part of their plans for insolvency.

The updated legislation – which has already been agreed by national governments – will come into force by the end of 2017.

On the mobile roaming agreement, consumers will also benefit in the interim, as prices are further cut from 30 April 2016 by around 75%. This means that the cost of using data has dropped by over 95% in the past 4 years. The UK has led from the beginning in getting agreement to end EU mobile roaming charges and has worked with its allies in other EU countries and the European Parliament to get a good deal for consumers.

Source Article from https://www.gov.uk/government/news/eu-holiday-boost-to-british-tourists-cheaper-holiday-calls-and-tougher-consumer-protection

Press release: New innovation centre in Leicestershire will help create 750 jobs

A new innovation centre for high-tech small firms in the Midlands, which will help create 750 jobs for people in the local area, is being opened today (26 October 2015) by Business Minister Anna Soubry.

The Advanced Technology Innovation Centre is based at Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park (LUSEP), which received £2 million of government funding in a City Deal to pave the way for the centre.

It meets the needs of growing businesses by offering flexible working spaces including workshops, labs and studios, and is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund.

Business Minister Anna Soubry said:

Leicester and Leicestershire are vital components in the Midlands engine for growth and that is why we are backing plans to boost investment and create more jobs for people. I want to see the local firms and community leaders, who know the area best, in the driving seat for these plans.

The Advanced Technology Innovation Centre at Loughborough University is a great example of the support available for small businesses that want to grow and innovate in Leicestershire.

Companies already using the facilities at the innovation centre include Nemaura Pharma, which designs new ways to deliver medicines using nanotechnology, Segura Systems, which supplies software to retailers to increase transparency in supply chains, and ELUXI, which specialises in lasers and optics.

Riccardo Tomassoni, Director of ELUXI, said:

The chance to relocate the ELUXI offices to the new Advanced Technology Innovation Centre (ATIC) was an opportunity we simply couldn’t pass up.

The central location has afforded us excellent transportation links both nationally and internationally and, whilst we have only just moved in, we are looking forward to developing relationships with those university research groups involved in photonics.

Peter Needle, Managing Director of Segura Systems, said:

Our move to ATIC has been excellent. Not only do we have access to great facilities at a very reasonable rate, we have also been introduced to the university’s wide academic and business communities. This has resulted in a partnership with Responsible Solutions, which has allowed Segura to enter the construction market.

I can say that this very valuable new market simply would not have happened without the support we have received from LUSEP.

The government has been inviting proposals for devolution from all parts of the country and wants the Midlands to be an engine for growth. The Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership City Deal was signed on 24 March 2014 and secured a total of £12 million of government investment to unlock £130 million of further private sector funding.

As well as the support for Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park, a new Growth Hub was created to provide tailored advice and support for businesses in Leicestershire.

Anna Soubry will also be opening the 2-week Leicester Business Festival with a speech encouraging private firms and investors to get involved in the Midlands engine for growth and boost the local economy. The festival gives local businesses the chance to come together, exchange ideas and plan for the future.

Notes to editors

  1. The Advanced Technology Innovation Centre is also holding an Open House event on Thursday 5 November 2015 for businesses interested in finding out more about how they could benefit from the facilities.
  2. Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park was awarded £2 million in the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership City Deal, to support the development of the Advanced Technology Innovation Centre.
  3. Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park is one of the UK’s largest science parks, providing a supportive environment in which innovative, high-tech businesses can thrive. It currently provides 63,000 square metre floor space for 40 organisations, from global organisations in the energy and transport sectors such as Caterpillar and E.ON, to high-tech start-ups.
  4. By 2020 the development of the Advanced Technology Innovation Centre and the surrounding site is predicted to create 755 new jobs, safeguard 400 jobs and unlock follow-on investment of £50 million.

Source Article from https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-innovation-centre-in-leicestershire-will-create-750-jobs

Press release: New innovation centre in Leicestershire will create 750 jobs

A new innovation centre for high-tech small firms in the Midlands, which will create 750 jobs for people in the local area, is being opened today (26 October 2015) by Business Minister Anna Soubry.

The Advanced Technology Innovation Centre is based at Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park (LUSEP), which received £2 million of government funding in a City Deal to pave the way for the centre.

It meets the needs of growing businesses by offering flexible working spaces including workshops, labs and studios.

Business Minister Anna Soubry said:

Leicester and Leicestershire are vital components in the Midlands engine for growth and that is why we are backing plans to boost investment and create more jobs for people. I want to see the local firms and community leaders, who know the area best, in the driving seat for these plans.

The Advanced Technology Innovation Centre at Loughborough University is a great example of the support available for small businesses that want to grow and innovate in Leicestershire.

Companies already using the facilities at the innovation centre include Nemaura Pharma, which designs new ways to deliver medicines using nanotechnology, Segura Systems, which supplies software to retailers to increase transparency in supply chains, and ELUXI, which specialises in lasers and optics.

Riccardo Tomassoni, Director of ELUXI, said:

The chance to relocate the ELUXI offices to the new Advanced Technology Innovation Centre (ATIC) was an opportunity we simply couldn’t pass up.

The central location has afforded us excellent transportation links both nationally and internationally and, whilst we have only just moved in, we are looking forward to developing relationships with those university research groups involved in photonics.

Peter Needle, Managing Director of Segura Systems, said:

Our move to ATIC has been excellent. Not only do we have access to great facilities at a very reasonable rate, we have also been introduced to the university’s wide academic and business communities. This has resulted in a partnership with Responsible Solutions, which has allowed Segura to enter the construction market.

I can say that this very valuable new market simply would not have happened without the support we have received from LUSEP.

The government has been inviting proposals for devolution from all parts of the country and wants the Midlands to be an engine for growth. The Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership City Deal was signed on 24 March 2014 and secured a total of £12 million of government investment to unlock £130 million of further private sector funding.

As well as the support for Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park, a new Growth Hub was created to provide tailored advice and support for businesses in Leicestershire.

Anna Soubry will also be opening the 2-week Leicester Business Festival with a speech encouraging private firms and investors to get involved in the Midlands engine for growth and boost the local economy. The festival gives local businesses the chance to come together, exchange ideas and plan for the future.

Notes to editors

  1. The Advanced Technology Innovation Centre is also holding an Open House event on Thursday 5 November 2015 for businesses interested in finding out more about how they could benefit from the facilities.
  2. Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park was awarded £2 million in the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership City Deal, to support the development of the Advanced Technology Innovation Centre.
  3. Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park is one of the UK’s largest science parks, providing a supportive environment in which innovative, high-tech businesses can thrive. It currently provides 63,000 square metre floor space for 40 organisations, from global organisations in the energy and transport sectors such as Caterpillar and E.ON, to high-tech start-ups.

Source Article from https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-innovation-centre-in-leicestershire-will-create-750-jobs

Press release: Government and Tata steel to provide support to Scunthorpe steel workers and local economy

The government and Tata Steel have announced an initial support package of up to £9 million to support the local economy and employees affected by the proposed restructuring and job losses at the Scunthorpe steelworks.

Tata Steel’s regeneration arm UK Steel Enterprise has pledged £3 million to support job creation in Scunthorpe, on top of £10 million it has already earmarked to help regenerate UK steel communities over the next 5 years.

The new £3 million funding is being matched by the UK government. It will provide support for more start-up businesses and companies that are looking to expand and create jobs.

In addition, the government is separately providing up to £3 million specifically for training of affected employees through local further education colleges.

The government has asked Baroness Liz Redfern, leader of North Lincolnshire Council, to lead a taskforce which will identify local needs, co-ordinate with UK Steel Enterprise and consider whether additional support may be necessary.

Business Secretary Sajid Javid said:

This is a very difficult time for the workforce, so it is important that the government and the company have come together to support people and the local economy.

The government has no intention of simply standing aside whilst the steel industry faces global challenges on a scale unprecedented in recent years. We will do everything we can to help workers and to ensure a level playing field for the industry.

Tata Steel has a strong track record of creating jobs and supporting local communities right across the country, and its commitment to this package today is to be commended.

Tata Steel’s UK Steel Enterprise is also providing an additional £1.5 million to support job creation in steel communities around its Dalzell and Clydebridge sites in Scotland. The UK government is continuing discussions with the Scottish government about further support.

Karl Koehler, Chief Executive of Tata Steel’s European operations, said:

I recognise this is a challenging time for the employees affected by the restructuring we announced.

We are committed to doing everything in our power to support those impacted and through UK Steel Enterprise we will help create new jobs in the affected local communities.

The UK steel industry is facing extremely challenging circumstances and we welcome the government’s pledge to match our funding package for those affected.

Lady Redfern, chair of the local taskforce, said:

We have been really well supported, with ministers, right up to the Prime Minister and the local MPs, particularly Andrew Percy who has worked with us to create our list of asks from government.

The £9 million announced today by the government and UK Steel Enterprise will provide a significant boost to the North Lincolnshire economy. We intend to work quickly to help people who have lost their jobs to ensure that every element of support is available, whilst at the same time encouraging new businesses to start and grow in North Lincolnshire.

Over the last 4 decades Tata Steel’s UK Steel Enterprise has helped to regenerate local economies with £88 million of support and created more than 75,000 new jobs across the UK.

Notes to editors

  1. Statutory redundancy costs are not included in this package and would fall to the company to fund.
  2. Last week (16 October 2015), the government held a high-level Steel Summit which led to the creation of 3 working groups each chaired by a separate Minister to urgently identify joint work in 3 key areas. These held their first meetings this week.
    • public procurement – the ambition is to drive up the number of contracts won by UK steel manufacturers in fair and open competition. This working group is chaired by Matthew Hancock MP, Minister for the Cabinet Office
    • international comparisons – to consider what lessons can be learned from other countries in the EU and beyond. This working group is chaired by Business Minister Anna Soubry
    • competitiveness and productivity – to look at energy and environmental costs, business rates, regulation and what action industry can take to drive up their competitiveness including skills, training and maximising their assets. This working group is chaired by the Commercial Secretary to the Treasury, Lord O’Neill
  3. Economic development and regeneration is devolved in Scotland.

Source Article from https://www.gov.uk/government/news/government-and-tata-steel-to-provide-support-to-scunthorpe-steel-workers-and-local-economy

Press release: PM and Chinese President’s visit to the Northern Powerhouse unlocks investment

The north of England will forge new partnerships with China and unlock the potential of the Northern Powerhouse, the Prime Minister will announce today. The announcement comes as the Prime Minister and Chinese President, Xi Jinping, embark upon a tour of Manchester, as part of the China State Visit.

The Prime Minister said:

We are committed to rebalancing our economy and building a Northern Powerhouse. China is a key trading partner for the UK and the partnerships being made today will see real investment going into the north. This is all part of this government’s plan to attract more investment and deliver economic growth to an area of huge potential.

Partnerships set to be agreed include:

  • Hainan Airlines announcing the first direct flights from Manchester Airport to China – the first outside London. The deal is estimated to provide a £50 million boost to the Manchester economy and open up links from China into the Northern Powerhouse.
  • Beijing Construction and Engineering Group (BCEG) being appointed as main contractor for the Middlewood Locks regeneration project in Manchester. BCEG will also provide £4 million development financing to help kickstart the project.
  • As announced on the Chancellor’s visit to China last month, Hualing Group is signing an agreement with UK real estate company Scarborough Group International to invest in 3 major regeneration projects in the north: Middlewood Locks in Manchester, Thorpe Park in Leeds and Sheffield Digital Campus.
  • The University of Central Lancashire establishing a joint innovation and entrepreneurship campus with the Shenzhen government in south eastern China
  • Uppingham School in Rutland setting up 5 schools in China in a partnership with Hainan Airline and Tourism Group.
  • Hong Kong based company Netdragon Websoft finalising the acquisition of the educational supplies company Promethean World Plc, based in Blackburn, for £84.8 million, securing 671 jobs.

On their tour of Manchester, the Prime Minister and President will visit Manchester City Football academy. Here, they will see a training match taking place and meet with players – past and present from Manchester City and Manchester United – including Gary Neville, Patrick Vieira, Denis Law and Mike Summerbee.

Taking a tour of the National Football Museum, they will see a number of Chinese and British artefacts including the 1930 World Cup ball and a 7-panel football – a gift from the China Football Museum which pre-dates 1914. They will also witness Chinese football player Sun Jihai being inducted into the National Football Museum Hall of Fame.

The Prime Minister and President will then attend a lunch at Manchester Town Hall, alongside more than 200 businesses, civic leaders and community representatives from across the north of England and China, providing an opportunity for the Northern Powerhouse to strengthen links with China.

On their last stop, the leaders are visiting Manchester Airport as Hainan Airlines announce their new route. Here, they will see an exhibition for Airport City Manchester and meet with the Airport’s Chief Executive to discuss the plans for this new initiative.

Source Article from https://www.gov.uk/government/news/pm-and-chinese-presidents-visit-to-the-northern-powerhouse-unlocks-investment