Western Australian Premier to visit UK, United Arab Emirates and Belgium

08:18, May 31, 2011      

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West Australian (WA) Premier Colin Barnett on Monday said he will later this week travel to London of United Kingdom to discuss arrangements for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM).

Barnett will also visit Dubai of United Arab Emirates, and Brussels of Belgium to discuss trade and investment opportunities in WA with key players.

In London, Barnett will meet the Queen to discuss arrangements for CHOGM, to be held in Perth in October, and will deliver the annual Menzies Lecture at the Menzies Institute of Australian Studies at King's College.

Barnett would also meet with senior United Kingdom government energy and trade ministers, noting that WA's trade with the United Kgindom in 2010 accounted for 45 percent of Australian-UK trade, totalling 6.75 billion U.S. dollars.

While in Belgium, Barnett said he plans to promote WA as a site for the largest and most advanced radio telescope ever constructed, known as the Square Kilometer Array (SKA).

"I will talk to senior European Commission officials about Western Australia's potential as an energy supplier, and about our shared interests in removing trade barriers," he said in a statement released on Monday.

"I will also highlight opportunities for scientific co- operation in activities such as the Square Kilometer Array and development of alternative energy."

Meanwhile, he said trade with the United Arab Emirates was worth more than 2.43 billion U.S. dollars last year, and the Emirates were a significant customer for WA's agricultural products and alumina.

"I'll be taking a very strong message that now is the right time to invest in WA, not only in the resources sector, but also in agriculture, services and advanced manufacturing industries," he said.

Barnett will leave Perth on Wednesday and return on Sunday, accompanied by his wife and two staff members.

Source: Xinhua
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