British Ambassadors in Gulf region brief parliamentarians on UK relations & regional trends
On 11 March, BGIPU hosted a virtual parliamentary briefing with British Ambassadors to UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Oman, and the Chargé d’Affaires to Kuwait. The event was chaired by BGIPU Executive Committee member and Chair of the Saudi Arabia and Oman APPG, Mr Mark Menzies MP. It was well-attended by MPs and Peers from the BGIPU Executive Committee and a range of Select Committees and APPGs.
The Members who attended the roundtable received briefings from HM Ambassador to Qatar, Mr Jonathan Wilks CMG, HM Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Mr Neil Crampton, HM Ambassador to Oman, Mr Hamish Cowell CMG, and Chargé d’Affaires to Kuwait, Mr Tim Voase. The floor was opened for questions in the latter part of the discussion.
The roundtable was on opportunity for Members to learn first-hand about the political, social and economic situation in their respective countries, particularly in light of the recent reconciliation of the GCC. It is clear that the dynamics in the region are changing rapidly as the countries try to ensure they will be economically successful despite the global trend moving away from oil and to more environmentally friendly energy sources.
The engagement with the HM Ambassadors was a hugely worthwhile meeting for UK parliamentarians to keep informed about what exactly is happening in the region and the role that the UK is playing overseas. As one parliamentary participant noted: “Members are only as useful as their briefings”. BGIPU would like to thank the HM Ambassadors for taking the time to speak to the parliamentarians and for delivering such insightful remarks.