London, UK ( -- Prime Minister Barham Salih and members of his cabinet yesterday met HRH Prince Andrew the Duke of York and British Foreign Secretary William Hague and discussed the strengthening of bilateral relations and trade. The meetings took place at the conclusion of the two-day Kurdistan Region Gateway to Iraq Trade and Investment Conference in London, which was attended by more than 500 delegates representing companies and embassies from around the world. Both Mr Hague and the Duke of York, in separate meetings, said they were pleased the conference had been a success and hoped that more British companies would take advantage of the opportunities in Kurdistan and Iraq. The Prime Minister invited them both to visit the Kurdistan Region. The Prime Minister and the Foreign Secretary discussed a range of subjects including issues affecting the wider Middle East, the post- election process in Iraq, and the rapid growth of Kurdistan’s economy. Mr Salih said, “Kurdistan can be the model and the gateway for the rest of Iraq and the region.” Prime Minister Salih congratulated Mr Hague on his recent appointment as Foreign Secretary. He asked that Britain’s diplomatic representation in Kurdistan be strengthened and further work be done on cultural and other exchanges, for example, through the British Council. He thanked Britain for its role in the liberation of Iraq.
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THE KURDISTAN REGION IS OPEN FOR BUSINESS 05:17:22 17 Jun. 2010 Prime Minister Salih meets Britain’s Prince Andrew and Foreign Secretary Hague 
Mr Hague said, “We value and will build on our relationship. There is a very good history of working together and let’s continue with that.” Mr Hague expressed his hopes for the success of the political process in Iraq and the formation of the new government. The meeting was attended by Alistair Burt, the Minister for the Middle East who had attended the conference the previous day, and by KRG Interior Minister Karim Sinjari, Head of Foreign Relations Minister Falah Bakir, Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman, the KRG’s High Representative to the UK, and the Charge D’Affaires at the Iraqi Embassy Abdulmohaimin Al-Oraibi. In his meeting with the Duke of York, who is the UK’s Special Representative for International Trade and Investment, the Prime Minister spoke of the conference and the high level of interest among international companies in doing business in Kurdistan and Iraq. He described Iraq as the largest emerging market. The Duke of York asked about various sectors of Kurdistan’s economy and where the opportunities lay for British business. He also discussed the economies of Iraq’s neighbouring countries and how they impact relations between the Middle East and Europe. The meeting was attended by KRG Minister for Natural Resources Ashti Hawrami, Minister for Trade and Industry Sinan Celebi, Head of the Kurdistan Board of Investment Minister Herish Muharam, Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman, the KRG’s High Representative to the UK, and the Charge D’Affaires at the Iraqi Embassy Abdulmohaimin Al-Oraibi. See also:  Press release: Prime Minister Salih extends invitation to foreign investors Press release: Prime Minister Salih calls for new era of British and international business engagement with Kurdistan Prime Minister Salih's speech at the conference. Photo gallery of the Kurdistan Trade and Investment Conference
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