Last Thursday Commonwealth Exchange was delighted to welcome Rt Hon Hugo Swire MP, The Minister of State for the Commonwealth, to deliver the keynote speech at our Autumn reception.
The reception was held in the incredibly grand Locarno Suite (dubbed "the Drawing room for the Nation") at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO).
The Minister's full speech can be found here but here are a few of the highlights:
"We have a duty to ensure the Commonwealth continues to evolve, adapt and stay relevant in the 21st Century."
"Commonwealth Exchange... have rightly called for more focus on Commonwealth trade. We can - and must - be more ambitious."
"Together, we belong to a unique network - the Commonwealth family. It has global reach and great diversity. But it also has vast, untapped potential. And I hope tonight we take another step in releasing it."
Our Executive Director Tim Hewish also spoke at the event. He discussed the need to put trade at the centre of our engagement with the Commonwealth. In addition he laid out some of our upcoming projects, and in particular our upcoming visa report which launches a week today.
The final speech came from two Directors of Quirk, a marketing agency who launched in South Africa 15 years ago and now have clients and offices across the Commonwealth.
Thanks to all who attended, to the Minister and Quirk for speaking, and to the FCO for hosting. We hope you all enjoyed it.