An overview of activity and outcomes for members.
Work across our strategic priorities continues at pace, with the publication of key reports, our International Conference and a series of productive meetings and delegations all taking place over recent weeks.
We have now finalised recruitment to complete the second cohort of our Next Generation Leadership Council (NGLC) recruits will join members appointed last year, who are currently organising themselves around the themes they will explore during their tenure. Our first cohort of members cycled off the group at the end of March and we are enormously grateful for their contribution.
We have continued to engage with government and key parliamentarians on the Financial Services and Markets Bill. Greater accountability of regulators formed the basis of many of the more than 200 amendments raised by Peers as the Bill passed through the Lords Grand Committee. These included proposals for a new Office for Regulatory Accountability and a Parliamentary Joint Committee to oversee regulators. After consultation with members, we are advocating for enhanced parliamentary oversight, formalisation of metrics to measure the regulators' performance and further strengthening of Cost-Benefit Analysis panels. Report stage for the Bill is expected in the coming weeks.
Further to the oral evidence we gave to the then Business, Enterprise and Industrial Strategy Select Committee as part of their inquiry into levels of productivity in different British industries, we were pleased to see several of our points appear in their final report, including on areas such as regulation and access to skills. Many of the report’s recommendations also reflected long-standing TheCityUK policy asks, including a review of R&D incentives and skills policy.
Regions and nations
We continue to build our programme of engagement with local policymakers and stakeholders and our Regional and National Chairs are central to this activity. We are pleased to report that we’ve made new Chair appointments in recent weeks to restore the network to full strength in the North West, Wales and Yorkshire and the Humber, with one imminent appointment in the North East.
As part of our engagement programme with metro mayors we hosted Oliver Coppard, Labour, South Yorkshire and Andy Street, Conservative, West Midlands for events in March and April, and are in the process of agreeing dates for events with several other elected mayors. We also held a roundtable with Conservative peer Lord Duncan, who served as a minister in the Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland offices, at the end of March to discuss the Future of the Union.
In mid-March, our Chief Economist and Head of Research gave a keynote presentation at the Department for Business and Trade’s (DBT) Newcastle ‘Services Roadshow’, drawing on our economic research and highlighting the contribution the industry makes to the region and the role of industry exports in the local economy.
We have continued to work closely with partners to deliver our regional events, including the City of London Corporation with whom we’ve recently organised a roundtable in Manchester for members to meet with the Lord Mayor of London. We’ve also held regional events on skills and education with the Financial Services Skills Commission (FSSC) and Progress Together and will be holding a virtual discussion with Shadow Skills Minister, Toby Perkins MP, in May. We are pleased to support a new initiative, led by John Heaps of YBS and his team, to explore the skills challenges for the industry in Yorkshire and the Humber. Our Regional Chair for that region, John Walsh, sits on the steering body for this work which will report in the Autumn.
International trade and investment
In April we held our International Conference 2023, sponsored by Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, HSBC and State Street. The conference attracted around 200 delegates in person and around 75 online, including various international delegations, who heard keynotes from our Board Chair; Ian Stuart, CEO, HSBC UK Bank Plc; Lord Johnson of Lainston CBE, Minister for Investment, and Nick Thomas-Symonds MP, Shadow Secretary for International Trade. We also had a series of engaging panels on trade and investment trends, driving the transition to net zero, and how the industry supports global innovation. The speeches generated widespread media coverage and feedback from delegates has been very positive.