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Tue May 11 2021

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Chinese students get northern sales pitch

9 Dec 16 University College London (UCL) has launched the UK-China Infrastructure Academy with government backing to promote Chinese investment in UK infrastructure projects.

Andrew Percy MP, Lin Nianxiu, Alan Penn and Tony Meggs unveil a plaque marking the launch of the UK-China Infrastructure Academy
Andrew Percy MP, Lin Nianxiu, Alan Penn and Tony Meggs unveil a plaque marking the launch of the UK-China Infrastructure Academy

The Bartlett, UCL’s built environment faculty, is providing training to delegates from Chinese companies and government departments on the policy, financial, planning and legal frameworks governing the UK infrastructure development.

The first 30 delegates from China arrived this week. As part of their course, they will visit construction sites and be shown around infrastructure investment opportunities in what used to be called the north of England but government ministers prefer to call ‘the Northern Powerhouse’.

The UCL team is led by academic director Chen-Yu Chang, in partnership with banks and professional services companies including Arup, Aecom, HSBC, KPMG and law firms CMS, Ashurst and Hogan Lovells.

Launching the academy, trade minister Andrew Percy said: “I am delighted to launch this new Academy – an important stepping stone in this golden era of UK China relations. Chinese companies will benefit from greater support to invest in the Northern Powerhouse and across the UK, helping create more jobs and boosting economic growth.”

UCL president and provost Michael Arthur said: “The launch of the UK-China Infrastructure Academy is an exciting opportunity for UCL to use its considerable expertise to help Britain and China to expand their investment in infrastructure.”

Chinese investment in UK infrastructure and regeneration projects has totalled £4bn since 2012. The academy will look to increase this by helping companies who want to invest in the UK but lack the necessary experience.

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