Week Ahead in International Trade: King's Speech, International Trade Week and fresh data

Mon 6 Nov 2023
Posted by: Phillip Adnett

News being checked on phone

Another important week for UK businesses and traders opens with the widely anticipated King’s Speech tomorrow (7 November).

In other big trade news, International Trade Week is running over the next five days across the UK and digitally.

We’ll also get a snapshot of the UK’s economic health on Friday (11 November) with GDP and trade data released.

King’s Speech – King Charles III will give the King’s Speech on Tuesday, setting out the government’s legislative agenda for the next year or so. The speech is likely to be impactful for a couple of reasons: firstly, it’ll be Charles’ first since becoming monarch; secondly, it is likely to be the last chance for prime minister Rishi Sunak to set out his agenda ahead of the general election, which is widely expected sometime in 2024.

The Westminster rumour mill has it that Sunak will pivot away from green policies to draw a dividing line between the Conservatives and the Labour opposition, while also setting out his answer to the cost-of-living crisis. The BBC has a list of all the possible policies that could make it into the speech and a few that won’t.

Parliament – After the King’s Speech tomorrow, MPs will return to Parliamentary affairs .

On Wednesday (8 November), a Treasury Committee will host an evidence session on SME finance. Also taking place that day, energy security and net zero secretary, Claire Coutinho, is giving evidence on the work of her department to the Energy Security and Net Zero Committee, while technology secretary Michelle Donelan will also be talking AI at the science and technology committee

International Trade Week – The Department of Business and Trade (DBT) holds its third annual week promoting international trade. Throughout the UK, an abundance of events is being held, discussing everything you need and want to hear about importing and exporting.

The IOE&IT will be holding a webinar on Wednesday, hosted by IOE&IT executive editor William Barns-Graham and featuring trade policy & engagement lead Henriette Gjaerde, on how exporters can get the most from the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

You can read more about the IOE&IT’s participating in the programme here.

Middle east – As the Israel-Hamas war rages on, international leaders are still scrambling to deal with the fallout.

Foreign ministers at the G7 are expected to discuss how to respond on Tuesday and Wednesday (7-8 November). The Arab League is also hosting an emergency summit on Saturday (11 November) in Riyadh, where Arab leaders will meet and discuss the ongoing crisis.

Given the continuing impact of the war on global energy markets, any plan for peace could stabilise international prices and calm concerns over disruption to wider trade.

Other dates for the diary

Monday – UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization releases its ‘State of Food and Agriculture’ report

Tuesday – Strike by Amazon staff at Coventry warehouse

Wednesday – Bank of England governor Andrew Bailey set to address the Central Bank of Ireland’s annual conference

Thursday – City minister Andrew Griffin speaks at the Politico UK Financial Services Summit

Friday – UK’s 3rd quarter GDP and trade data released

Saturday – Armistice day

Sunday - Diwali