FORMER Conservative party leader, Iain Duncan Smith, will be the keynote speaker at a major business conference in Stratford-upon-Avon.
The architect of welfare reforms will be among those who will talk at the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Economic Conference at the Crowne Plaza Hotel on Friday, 3rd November.
Andy Street CBE – the former chief executive of John Lewis and recently elected mayor of the West Midlands – will reflect on his first six months in office, while Dr Adam Marshall and Suren Thiru, both from the British Chambers of Commerce, will talk about the UK economy in the wake of a long period of political uncertainty.
Janice Charette, Canada’s High Commissioner to the UK, will offer a unique perspective on the UK’s ability to strike new trade deals with countries around the world following the exit from the European Union.
Also speaking will be Paul Noon, executive director at Coventry University Enterprises, Dave Ayton-Hill, head of economy and skills at Warwickshire County Council, and Stratford-on-Avon MP Nadhim Zahawi and Nuneaton MP Marcus Jones.
Adam Dent, of Coventry-based Advent Communications, will host the event.
Louise Bennett, chief executive of the Chamber, said: “The past couple of years have seen a great deal of change on a regional, national and international level.
“We are delighted that we can be joined by Andy Street on what will mark six months of him being in office. Not only can he give us a regional insight, he can also talk about his experiences with John Lewis and how a major company manages change and economic uncertainty.
“Iain Duncan Smith had, up until last year, played a major role in government and was a keen supporter of the UK leaving the EU so he can provide a very interesting perspective on where the UK might be heading – just as Janice Charrette will be able to offer a view from the ‘outside looking in’.
“Couple all of that with contributions from some of our local MPs, from key regional economic experts and national business figures and we have a fantastic conference to look forward to.
“As ever, we will also be staging panel discussions during the conference, as well as offering one of the best opportunities to network there is in the region throughout the whole of the year.”
To book a place see www.cw-chamber.co.uk/events/the-chamber-s-annual-business-economic-conference