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Brexit: It's Happening This Month!... Maybe.
Regular readers of our Policy Update may recognise this month's title bares a striking resemblance to last month's: " Brexit: It's Happening Next Month. Currently. " That's because on 26 February, the Prime Minister announced that she would hold a vote in Parliament to extend Article 50 in the event that her 'new deal,' presented to the House on 12 March fails to pass.

While this is by no means a perfect scenario, BAB nonetheless cautiously welcomed this news. BAB has long called for a 'no-deal' scenario to be taken off of the table, and this potential extension to Art. 50 goes some way to providing at least a bit of breathing room to businesses in the UK. But breathing room is not a long-term solution, and the 'short and limited' extension to Article 50 will do little to fight the fire of uncertainty that has been growing since June 2016 if no more answers are given to the questions businesses have been asking about Britain's trading future.

Looking West, we enjoyed some positive news from the transatlantic corridor in the form of two announcements on Mutual Recognition Agreements (MRAs) between the United States and United Kingdom. The first covers telecom equipment, electro-magnetic compatibility (EM C) for information and communications technology products, pharmaceutical good manufacturing practice (GMP) inspections, and marine equipment. We welcomed this announcement in the form of a short statement , and reiterated the support of the transatlantic community for them when these MRAs were originally established with the European Union, particularly on pharmaceutical GMP inspections.

The second MRA announcement concerned derivatives trading and clearing, specifically that market participants could be assured of continuity of derivatives trading and clearing, no matter the outcome of Brexit. Given that US and British banks account for the bulk of trading in the market, trading $1.2tn a day in deals, using venues and clearing houses in each other’s markets, this assurance is especially welcome in these uncertain times.

Finally, this month the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) published its summary of negotiating objectives for a trade agreement between the United States and United Kingdom. This summary lays out the objectives of the US Government in 24 different areas including Customs, Regulation, Competition Policy, Procurement and Currency to name but a few. BAB submitted its recommendations to the USTR back in January. What is clear is that the US Government is prepared to begin negotiations with the UK post-Brexit, but what remains to be seen is if the same can be said of Britain.

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Events, Media & Initiatives
BAB Holds Networking Reception at the Houses of Parliament in Honour of US Ambassador to the UK Robert Wood Johnson
On 26 February, BritishAmerican Business London held its annual Networking Reception at the Speaker's House in the Houses of Parliament, in honour of the US Ambassador to the Court of St James's, Robert Wood Johnson.

The reception was held in proud partnership with the British-American Parliamentary Group, a cross-party coalition of MPs and Ministers working towards the promotion of the transatlantic relationship between Britain and the United States.

Attendees were treated to some fantastic speeches from The Speaker of the House, The Rt Hon John Bercow MP , The US Ambassador to the UK, Robert Wood Johnson , Secretary of State for Transport, The Rt Hon Chris Grayling MP , Peter Mather , Group Regional President, Europe & Head of Country, UK, BP plc , and our own Duncan Edwards , CEO, BritishAmerican Business.

The overall message? The transatlantic relationship is a bastion of stability in an atmosphere of uncertainty for the UK, and in the words of Mr Speaker, we must: "KBO" (Keep Buggering On!)

We would like to thank Mr Speaker for allowing us to use his fantastic home for this reception, as well as Ambassador Johnson, and the Rt Hon Chris Grayling MP for their excellent speeches. In addition, we would like to extend sincere thanks to our members and sponsors of this event, BP plc .

You can find more photos of the event here: BAB - BAPG Reception in Honour of Ambassador Robert Wood Johnson
A Warm Welcome to the New Deputy Chief of Mission, Yael Lempert
We are delighted to extend the warmest of welcomes to DCM Yael Lempert, the new Deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy London. BAB has already had the pleasure of meeting DCM Lempert both at our Networking Reception (above) and her official welcome at the residence of the US Ambassador to the UK and we look forward to working with her closely in the coming months and years.

DCM Lempert boasts a distinguished career in the US Senior Foreign Service , and her previous posts have seen her as acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Egypt and North Africa from June 2017 to December 2018, Yael was also the Senior Director for the Levant, Israel and Egypt at the National Security Council from 2014 to 2017, and served as Special Assistant to the President from 2015 to 2017.
You can find more information on DCM Lempert's career by clicking here.
The STIR Conference | The 100 Year Life

On 13 February, BAB London held its first diversity and inclusion conference of 2019 - The STIR - The 100 Year Life.

Inspired by the book of the same name, this conference looked at ways to promote mental well-being in the workplace, as well as bridge inter-generational divides between younger people and an increasingly ageing workforce.

Attendees were treated to a fantastic range of panels and fireside chats, and were able to hear insights from leading female executives such as Dame Vivian Hunt, McKinsey & Company , and current chair of BAB, and Irene Dorner, former CEO of HSBC USA and former chair of BAB.

We also had keynote remarks from Alok Sharma MP, Minister of State for Education , and two panel sessions bringing together senior executives from leading businesses such as Corneel Koster, Delta Air Lines ; Baroness Sally Greengross ; Kristina Leroux Harvey, KLH Connections ; Andy Cottrill, Q5 ; Chris Lecatsas-Lyus MBACP, Chicago Booth ; Claire Mason, Man Bites Dog, and a fantastic, interactive presentation from Dr. Jon Finn of Tougher Minds.

This event could not have come at a more relevant time, as later this month, BAB will be releasing its Policy Agenda for 2019, with an entire section dedicated to talent. The workforce is the lifeblood of the economy, and like any organism is under constant change. BAB's policy agenda, with the help of events such as these, will help plot how we can navigate these challenges and prepare for change in the coming years.

We'd like to thank all of our attendees, our wonderful hosts and sponsors The University of Chicago Booth School of Business , and of course members of our STIR committee Jane Delbene and Emma Avignon.
BAB Leadership Delegation to Washington D.C.

February saw leaders from BAB meet with leading US Government and businesses stakeholders, as part of a trip to Washington D.C.
The trip provided BAB the opportunity to meet with the Assistant United States Trade Representative for Europe and the Middle East, Dan Mullaney, alongside leading transatlantic businesses and our friends and colleagues at the British-American Business Association (BABA) in Washington for an update on the status of US-UK and US-EU trade discussions.
In addition, BAB met with representatives from the US Commerce Department, the US Chamber of Commerce, the British Embassy and participated in a roundtable kindly hosted by SIFMA. 

BAB has the privilege to regularly meet with representatives from both US and UK Governments. To find out how you can be more involved in our policy work, please contact Dominic Parker, Communications Manager |
Mental Well-Being in the Workplace

On 28 February, BAB New York, in partnership with Q5 Partners , were pleased to welcome Lord Dennis Stevenson, co-author of an influential government report on mental health in the workplace, to hear his insights on why mental health is such an important topic for businesses to engage with. With thanks to our partners at Q5, and Dow Jones for graciously hosting this fantastic event
Business Briefings: Post-Davos Reflections

Days after the 2019 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, BAB London held an evening briefing to gain insight on some of the key themes discussed, including globalisation, sustainability, trust in leadership, and accountability within the inclusion and diversity agenda. Thank you to our members McKinsey & Company for hosting, and to our esteemed speakers for the sincere and stimulating conversation.
BAB Holds Life Sciences & Transatlantic Trade Roundtable in Proud Partnership with Eli Lilly & Company

On 27 February, BAB, in partnership with Eli Lilly & Company held a roundtable discussion at One Great George Street in London, UK, on 'How to grow US-UK Trade and Investment: Learnings From the Life Sciences Sector.'

The event was attended by representatives from both governments, regulatory agencies and transatlantic life sciences firms. Discussion centred on developing recommendations for growing economic collaboration and US-UK trade, with a focus on the life sciences sector. 

We would like to thank Eli Lilly & Company for sponsoring this fascinating event.
Policy & Public Affairs Manager, Theo Bachrach Speaks on Brexit Insight Panel - Hosted by Menzies LLP

Policy & Public Affairs Manager, Theo Bachrach was invited to speak as part of a Brexit Insight panel hosted by BAB members Menzies LLP.

With two panels focusing on different lenses through which to look at Brexit (Policy, Economy and Trade, and Technical Implications) the conversation provided diverse perspectives and a clear picture of what SMEs are facing.

Brexit for Americans - Director of Policy & Trade Emanuel Adam Weighs In

Emanuel Adam, BAB Executive Director and Director of Policy & Trade provided insight into what Brexit meant for Americans living and working in the UK, as part of a 'Brexit for Americans' feature in the latest The American Magazine . You can read his words here.
2019: The International Year of Transitions

2019 marks a significant year not only for the transatlantic relationship, but for Europe too. Alongside Brexit, the region will also have a new European Parliament and European Commission, as well as face a change in leadership across the EU’s institutions.

To help understand how businesses, people and governments are attempting to navigate these shifts, BAB New York was joined by Ambassador Jo ã o Vale de Almeida, Permanent Representative of the European Union to the United Nations. Kindly sponsored and hosted by our friends at KPMG.
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