Launch of the January Midlands Perspectives

30 January 2018

C502, Curzon Building, 4 Cardigan St, Birmingham, B4 7BD

With the release of the GDP estimates for the final quarter of 2017 (26th January), it will be possible to get an early perspective of likely economic trends over the next few years. Although many forecasts by official institutions have adopted a more downbeat assessment of the direction of economic performance, data from PMIs in the second half of the year paint a more robust picture – is this reflected in the latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) data?

With the relative appreciation of Sterling towards the end of the year - in early 2018 it is trading at US$1.36 - and international markets anticipating further gains to be made toward US$1.50 by the year-end - what impact could this have on export performance, if any?

Does the 2017 outturn give any real indication of the impact of Brexit, either in terms of new or lost opportunities?

Has last year’s policy hiatus as a result of the snap British election in June had any discernible output impact, and will this month’s cabinet re-shuffle provide a new policy impetus?

With Germany still without an effective government, almost four months after their elections, Spain bedevilled by Catalonia and Italy heading for fresh elections in March, what does this mean for EU policy consensus, given the widening gulf between Brussels and the Visegrad Group (Czechia, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia) and the final Brexit outcome?

We would like to ask you to participate in this discussion, following comments from the panel. Please see the agenda below:


1715 - Registration and refreshments
1745 - Welcome and Introduction

Chair: Rebecca Jones, MEF

1750 - Panel Discussion & Presentation:
Katrina Yu, Economic Advisor, Office of National Statistics
Phil Smith, Economist, IHS Markit
Paul Forrest, Head of Research, Midlands Economic Forum

1830 - Q&A and Discussion
1900 - Networking
1930 - Close

To register, or receive further information, please contact or telephone 0770 3735 408

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The Midlands Economic Forum is a neutral, independent forum bringing together representatives of the public, private and voluntary sectors to evaluate real trends in the local economy. Events are run according to "The Chatham House Rule", agenda and participants subject to revision and change.

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