Harnessing the Commonwealth Advantage in International Trade

13th July 2017


Commonwealth members already enjoy a trade advantage without any formal collaboration. We tend to trade on average around 20% and benefit from lower trade costs arising from our commonalities.  These results suggest potential for enhanced cooperation to further stimulate the Commonwealth trade advantage in contemporary trade, finance and investment flows. Getting our trade, finance and investment governance structures fit for purpose within the context of 21st century trade – in anticipation of the next production revolution – is a prerequisite to regenerative development. This one-day event organised in collaboration with the London Wealth Forum will explore how the Commonwealth advantage in international trade can be more effectively harnessed to this effect.  





Opening Remarks

  • Rt Hon Baroness Patricia Scotland QC, Secretary General, Commonwealth Secretariat
  • Minister of State, Department for International Trade (tbc), UK

Moderator: Richard Moir, CEO London Wealth Forum


Session 1. The Commonwealth in the Changing Global Trading Landscape: This panel will explore the profound shifts arising in the global trading landscape and the Commonwealth trade advantage within this context.  

Panel (tbc): 

  • Guy de Jonquières, Senior Fellow at ECIPE
  • Alan Beattie, International Economy Editor, Financial Times
  • World Economic Forum;
  • City of London rep

Moderator: Jodie Keane, Commonwealth Secretariat, London




Session 2. Enhancing Connectivity across the Commonwealth: New forms of trading relationships are arising as a result of profound technological advances. In view of these transformations, this panel will explore 21st century trade support measures.    

Panel (tbc):

  • UK DIT;
  • London Chamber of Commerce;
  • International Chamber of Commerce
  • The City UK  
  • Bank of China rep  

Moderator: Commonwealth Secretariat, London




Session 3. Accessing Finance and Alternative Investment Vehicles: Upgrading productive structures requires access to finance. In turn, this requires institutional support and governance capabilities. This panel session will explore experiences across the Commonwealth and situate this discussion within the context of regenerative development.  

Panel (tbc): 

  • Professor Machiko Nissanke, Emeritus Professor, SOAS
  • Seth Terkper former Ghanian Minister of Finance,
  • Head of Sustainable Business, London Stock Exchange
  • Head of Global Environment and Social Risk Management, JP Morgan

Moderator: Howard Haughton, Commonwealth Secretariat 



 3:00- 4:00pm

Session 4.  International Financial Centres and Cross Border Investments: Adjusting to the new normal also means adapting regulatory frameworks. This panel will explore the changing position and role of Commonwealth IFCs within cross border investments and the profound shifts ongoing in business models.  

Panel (tbc):

  • OECD representative;
  • Small state Offshore Financial Centre representative;
  • Citizenship by investment intervention

Moderator: Lucas Rutherford, Commonwealth Secretariat