This month, the Government published its Green Paper on a Modern Industrial Strategy. I was pleased that the highly anticipated paper showcased the Government’s commitment to the Midlands and the Midlands Engine team will be visionary and constructive in our response to the consultation.

The publication of the Midlands Engine Strategy will give us a further opportunity to consult with the Government and outline our plans and ambitions for the Midlands in greater depth, looking further ahead to shape the next decade and beyond.
Key to this will be what the Midlands can look like once HS2 is up and running. Royal Assent will be a monumental day for the Midlands and indeed the UK. It firmly positions the region at the heart of the UK’s most ambitious infrastructure project and the benefits of improved journey times and increased capacity will go beyond transport, boosting productivity and economic growth across the whole region.

We need to set an ambitious and achievable vision that will help the Government to build a stronger economy where wealth and opportunity are shared amongst every community in our region and across the country.

Sir John Peace,
Midlands Engine

We will consult widely, incorporating views from across the region to ensure real change for the Midlands and for Britain.
I encourage you to respond to the Government's green paper by  clicking here

Midlands Engine Trade Summit

Midlands businesses wanting to trade and grow in overseas markets have the chance to hear about support services on offer from government and to find out how the Midlands Engine is working to boost the Midlands’ competitiveness and build a global reputation.
The inaugural Midlands Engine Trade Summit will be taking place from 9am-3pm on Thursday 9 March at the Vox Conference Centre in Birmingham.
The event will include speakers from Government and the worlds of finance and business. There will be workshops on the Midlands Engine, finance and exports and an exhibition. 
If you would like to express your interest to attend or to find out more about exhibiting at the Midlands Engine Trade Summit please click here.

Ian Harrison, 

Acting Director, Exports & Investment, The Midlands, Department for International Trade

Midlands Engine Strategy

In this rapidly changing global economic landscape we believe the Midlands can once again lead the way, help the nation work towards a better, more balanced economy and help Britain seize the opportunities ahead. 
Hot on the heels of the Industrial Strategy green paper will come the Midlands Engine Strategy expected soon. It will set out the government's commitment to supporting our efforts to deliver growth and increased productivity in the Midlands.
We will respond to the strategy with a vision and action plan that will equip Britain with a powerful Midlands to help compete on the world stage by building on our very strong set of industrial, commercial, economic and cultural assets.
The need for a strong Midlands’ economy has never been greater. I hope you will help us shape it and deliver it.

Maria Manchancoses, 
Programme Director, Midlands Engine

India Trade Mission

Following on from previous Midlands Engine market visits to North America, China and the Middle East, this March sees DIT market experts accompany businesses from across the region to ACMA Automechanika New Delhi, India’s leading international trade fair for the automotive service industry.
The automotive sector is an industry strength across the Midlands, and attendance on this trade mission is a must for companies looking to tap into India’s growing demand for expert British knowledge on topics such as Euro VI ready technologies by 2020, aftermarkets and collaborative R&D.
Please register your interest online here and find out how you can be part of Automechanika New Delhi.

Ian Harrison, 

Acting Director, Exports & Investment, The Midlands, Department for International Trade

MIPIM 2017

The Midlands is coming together on an unprecedented scale at global property fair MIPIM (Cannes, 14-17 March) to showcase more than £14billion worth of opportunities to international investors.

For the first time, the region will be exhibiting in a ‘Midlands UK’ pavilion, representating from Local Enterprise Partnerships and nearly 50 public and private sector partners. The property event, which includes an exhibition, conference and networking, will offer the Midlands the chance to promote projects including the High Speed 2 rail network and the region’s Enterprise Zones. 

For more information follow us on Twitter @UKMidlands.

Emma Gray
Marketing and Communications Director, Marketing Birmingham

Midlands Engine Investment Fund

Following great partnership work led by Nick Pulley, Chair of LLEP, the Midlands Engine Investment Fund pulls over £250m into a single ‘fund-of-funds’ that can provide equity, debt, small business loans and early stage, proof-of-concept funding when other sources are not available.

Overseen by the British Business Bank the fund is primarily aimed at start-up or early stage and fast growing small businesses, but established SMEs will also be eligible. The fund will launch in Spring. For more information click here.

Six Short Stories

Pershore push to increase agricultural productivity
This year, Warwickshire College Group launches a ground breaking initiative with an Agri-Tech research and development unit, following £500,000 investment from Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership through the Government’s Growth Deal.

Based at Pershore College – the National Centre of Excellence for Horticulture – and Moreton Morrell College, the project will focus on practical innovations which can be easily adopted by regional farmers and growers to improve efficiency and boost productivity.

For more information on Worcestershire LEP’s Growth Deal investment, visit their website www.wlep.co.uk.

HS2 tender
They're the trains that will connect the Midlands to London in less than 50 minutes - and the £2.75 billion contract to build the first part of Britain's HS2 fleet is now out to tender and awaiting bids from business.

Transport Secretary Christ Grayling says the move is a "major step" towards better connectivity. Click here for more info.

JLR engine development
Coventry car maker Jaguar Land Rover will invest in a massive engine development facility after it secured approval for a new plant at Whitley, likely to employ up to 750 people. The news comes after Jaguar announced proposals to build a new generation of electric cars in the Midlands. Click here for more info.

East Midlands gateway
An inland port near East Midlands Airport in Leicestershire could "unlock huge economic benefits" and create up to 7,000 jobs. The East Midlands Gateway project reflects the Midlands' position as the focal point of the UK economy. Find out more here.

Birmingham delegation visits Qatar
A delegation from Birmingham City Council and Marketing Birmingham visited Doha in January to build on the city's productive ties with Qatar. Council Leader John Clancy cited the upcoming Qatar-UK Trade and Investment Conference on 28 March as a sign of the confidence shown by foreign investors in the Midlands. It's the first time the UK and Qatar have held a high-level trade event outside London. The Midlands is centre stage. Read more.

Advanced official opening
The Rt Hon Greg Clark, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, visited The Mailbox in Birmingham recently to officially open the newly extended regional HQ of British company, Advanced, the third largest provider of software and services to the UK market.

Over the last nine months, the technology company has successfully created 200 new jobs at its West Midlands HQ, which occupies 45,000 sq. ft. of space in the iconic Mailbox, one of the city’s largest commercial buildings.

75% of the new hires are from the region. The company will bring further job prosperity to the area as it hires an additional 200 employees over the next nine months.


Upcoming Events

9 February       Midlands Engine Supervisory Board

1 March           CBI Event Leicester Space Centre

6 March           Spring Statement / Budget Day

9 March           Midlands Engine Trade Summit, The Vox, NEC

16 March         Drive Midlands Vehicle Electrification Supply Chain, Coventry

13-16 March    Export Insight visit: Czech Republic

14-17 March    MIPIM - Cannes, France 

21-24 March    India Trade Mission - Automechanika, New Delhi

28 March         Qatar-UK Trade & Investment Conference, Birmingham

17 April            Modern Industrial Strategy consultation closes

April                 Midlands Engine Investment Fund Launch 

25-27 April       Ceramics Expo, Cleveland, Ohio

9-11 May          Railtex Rail Midlands Challenge Fund activity, NEC

6-8 June          Automechanika, Birmingham