Stefan Pryor, Secretary of Commerce for the State of Rhode Island, will lead a US trade mission to the UK in September with Leeds and Hull named among the key target cities.
Visiting the Northern Powerhouse cities of Leeds, Hull and Manchester, as well as Edinburgh, the mission will see Rhode Island firms meet with UK business leaders with the aim of growing exports between the state and the North of England and Scotland.
Secretary Pryor and his team will be talking to UK businesses about the latest incentives and support available for British companies planning to set up an operation in Rhode Island, which is increasingly being seen by UK businesses as a first landing place in the US.
The mission, which has been organised by the Chafee Centre for International Business at Bryant University, Rhode Island Commerce Corporation and the US Department of Commerce, will bring together Rhode Island businesses offering unique products and services with potential UK resellers, agents and distributors as well as seeking suppliers and customers.
“More and more, international companies are realising the benefits of doing business in Rhode Island – including our competitive tax structure, potent economic development tools, and high quality of life,” said Mr Pryor.
“Companies with UK roots, including Finlays and Virgin Pulse, have chosen to plant their flag in our state, and we look forward to exploring opportunities with other companies that are looking to expand in America.”
As part of the visit, the delegation will meet with seasoned and potential Yorkshire and Humber exporters involved in ExportExchange – the peer-to-peer mentoring initiative aimed at supporting overseas trade in the Leeds City Region – and leaders in fintech and medtech industries where Rhode Island has a strong and growing sector that mirrors that of the North of England.
The visit builds upon a trip from Boston and New England to Leeds in 2016 when business leaders met with leading firms and civic leaders in the region for the first time, and which highlighted the similarities between the two economies and strengthened the ambition to do business together.