City of London aims to increase bilateral investment with Arabian Gulf: Mayor

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The City of London is looking to strengthen its relationship with Arabian Gulf countries and increase investment on both sides, said the City’s Lord Mayor Charles Bowman on Monday.

Bowman’s comments came at an uncertain time for the British economy following the completion of the Brexit process last week, resulting in the UK finally leaving the European Union.

“So I'm very optimistic in the post-Brexit era … Our relationships are very strong with the Gulf, and we're looking forward to continuing to strengthen that relationship with further investment on both sides,” said Bowman.

The Lord Mayor is the representative for the UK’s financial services sector and noted two areas in particular where the UK could work with the Arabian Gulf states.

The first is financial technology, also known as fintech.

“I think that's very much a sector that we could work with the Gulf states on,” said Bowman, who had recently completed a trip to the US tech hub of San Francisco to drum up more venture capital.

The second area he pointed to was that of green finance, noting that the sector is currently in a similar position to “where fintech was a couple of years ago.”

“I think there’s a huge opportunity in this space to do some good investments both ways … There are great opportunities,” Bowman added.

“We're very optimistic about the future. I think the EU needs us and we need them,” Bowman said about the future of the UK.

“The clarity business is very important. One thing we do know is that you're going to have this government in power for the next five years and maybe beyond, and I think that clarity is something that is helping investment coming to the UK,” he concluded.