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Business News/ News / World/  Rishi Sunak chooses 16th-century palace Hampton Court to host business summit aiming FDIs
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Rishi Sunak chooses 16th-century palace Hampton Court to host business summit aiming FDIs

With Britain looking to wrestle its ranking as Europe's top foreign direct investment (FDI) destination back from France, Sunak will require to reassure them next week of a guiding hand from government and of no more policy dead ends.

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, hammers a piece of jewellery during a meeting with small business owners from Sunny Bank Mills, at The Emma White Jewellery Studio in Sunny Bank Mills, Farsley, Britain, Thursday Nov. 23, 2023. (Molly Darlington/Pool photo via AP) (AP)Premium
British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, hammers a piece of jewellery during a meeting with small business owners from Sunny Bank Mills, at The Emma White Jewellery Studio in Sunny Bank Mills, Farsley, Britain, Thursday Nov. 23, 2023. (Molly Darlington/Pool photo via AP) (AP)

United Kingdom's Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has chosen Hampton Court – a 16th-century palace renowned for its maze – to host a summit at which he will attempt to win back favour among investors who have been left disoriented by twists and turns in British policy, reported Reuters on 23 November.

With Britain looking to wrestle its ranking as Europe's top foreign direct investment (FDI) destination back from France, Sunak will need to reassure them next week of a guiding hand from the government and no more policy dead ends.

Five prime ministers and a non-stop ministerial carousel since the 2016 Brexit vote have shaken Britain's reputation for stability among investors.

ALSO READ: Jeremy Hunt says UK economic growth forecast downgraded in blow to Rishi Sunak government

Earlier in May, French President Emanuel Macron won 13 billion euros ($14.2 billion) of commitments at an event in the glittering Versailles palace, and for Sunak to emulate it, he will urge his business audience to show similar faith in Britain. Though they may take some persuading.

From its rate of corporation tax, its net zero timetable, a major high-speed rail project, and its offshore and onshore wind policies, Britain has changed course on key policies.

Few executives say the country, long a magnet for FDI, has taken them for granted. While others say that they struggled to navigate the country's "slow and cumbersome" system.

"The UK has diminished in its ability to attract capital in a variety of sectors," said Jack Paris, the head of InfraRed Capital Partners.

"Things like tax deductions, subsidies: they have to work hand in hand to attract private capital," Paris told Reuters, adding that his firm was being cautious about investing in a heating and energy efficiency venture in Britain pending clarity over-regulation.

British finance minister Jeremy Hunt on Wednesday announced long-term tax incentives to boost business investment - key to speeding up the slow economy - and backed proposals to provide more support for foreign firms seeking to invest in the country.

With agency inputs.

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Published: 23 Nov 2023, 11:05 PM IST
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