More on promoting trade thru our embassies

As an update to my earlier post on promoting overseas trade thru our embassies, wiser heads than mine have also commented on this new role for our embassies. Two such are:

I’m sure that David Blackburn’s account of opinion in the Foreign Office is more accurate. Heck, they’ve got William Hague as Foreign Secretary and not a Miliband, which must boost their morale.

It wouldn’t have escaped those in the Foreign Office that they now have a central role in delivering our future prosperity. Influence and intelligent observation is what diplomats can deliver. Being respected for that, and being relied on for it must surely be what the FO wants.

Trade rightly centre stage once again

The wealth generated by our Victorian forefathers came from trade. I’ll not bother with dissecting guilt from exploitation from our Empirical actions, just to say it wasn’t all bad, as the legacy of the railways in India can attest.

It’s therefore a real pleasure to me that the Cameron government are focusing on international trade to help create the wealth that’ll help rid us of the horrible debts of the previous Labour government. In a recent article – A staunch and self-confident ally – for the Wall Street Journal on his recent trip to the US, David Cameron ended it with this:

“promoting trade will be a huge priority for my government. It’s the real stimulus our economies need, and Britain is open for business—especially to the U.S., where our close ties already deliver jobs and prosperity for both our peoples.”

Also pleasing is to learn that our overseas diplomatic embassies and missions are being re-focused on creating trading relations as their prime responsibility.

I wish I’d Iain Martin’s writing skills

Some of the issues contained in my recent posts have been: the lack of any credible Labour politician to argue their case in the much changed political world; the importance of William Hague’s recasting of UK foreign and diplomatic policies; that our salvation, economically, will come from being an outward-looking mercantile nation once again; and finally, that the inbuilt leftist liberal intelligentsia running the BBC and Channel 4, is struggling to adjust to a new political dynamic.

I wished I’d both the time and the writing skills to flesh out these issues. One man, who’s always on my political wavelength is Iain Martin, deputy editor of the Wall Street Journal Europe. Today he has in two blog posts wonderfully captured the importance of these issues. They are:

“The introduction to “Newsnight” on Wednesday was a classic of its kind: portentous, statist in its underlying assumptions and slyly contemptuous of the ability of the private sector’s ability to create wealth and employment.”

“Having declined to make the full-throated case for several years that private-sector wealth creation will power the recovery and it will be crowded out if the state stays too large, Cameron now finds that it is not widely enough understood in the media or the country.”

  • Labour needs lessons in opposition – where he both notes the intelligent shifts in UK foreign policy from William Hague, and Labour’s complete failure to understand these shifts, saying,

“How did Labour respond to all this? Former Foreign Secretary David Miliband said that William Hague needs to start behaving like a foreign secretary. This is silly. In the Locarno room at the FCO, Mr. Hague had just made a serious speech about Britain’s place in the world. That counts as behaving like a foreign secretary.”

Now if I was years younger, I’d be writing to Mr Martin and asking for an internship under his tutelage. Oh, and I got a little buzz of pleasure, to find that I’d used the word statist in my blog post on not wanting to hear from Gordon Brown, and that Iain used it in his piece on Cameron’s not arguing his case.

Now, waiting for Mark Urban’s analysis of William Hague’s speech on Newsnight, which I hope is the top story.

Choices, choices: Newsnight, or Question Time, + This Week

I like my news and analysis raw, not reheated, as it were, by watching a later recording of it. I know that’s not always possible, but it’s how I like it. If there’s shock and surprise I like to get it first hand.

Thursday night tonight, so it must be a political talk-fest. However, I’ve a small problem. I’m keen to watch Newsnight, and their analysis and possible discussion of William Hague’s recasting of UK foreign policy, so this will take precedence over Question Time. Then, deciding whether to watch This Week will depend who’s on the sofa with Michael Portillo.

Analysis of William Hague’s speech is my top priority. It’s the  effectiveness of our foreign policy and diplomatic priorities that can help make a huge difference to our economic well-being. We’ve got to be as outward looking a mercantile nation as were our Victorian forefathers.

Did you know, I imagine you do, that there are cities in China whose entire existence is centered around factories making socks, or ones making ties. I know this isn’t high up in foreign policy terms, but we need to understand global markets, and global manufacturing trends. Having diplomats and trade consulates overseas is the way to understand geo-political and geo-trade developments.