PRESS RELEASE – Baroness Nicholson gives French lessons on the IBBC

PRESS RELEASE 21 February 2014 Baroness Nicholson gives French lessons on the IBBC

More than 30 senior representatives of some of France’s biggest businesses were in Paris today to hear the IBBC’s Executive Chairman talk about the organisation’s work and ambitions for the future.

2014 France Visit - Picture 1

From left to right: Bernard Kouchner, founder of Medecins sans Frontieres and former French Foreign Minister, Emma Nicholson, and William Danvers, Deputy Secretary-General of the OECD. “One thing I’ll take away from this meeting is the buzz among participants after the session ended. Emma left quite an impression” Fareed Yasseen

Baroness Nicholson was joined by the Council’s COO, Christophe Michels, at the event which was held in the Iraqi Embassy. The Ambassador, Fareed Yasseen and his UK counterpart, Faik Nerweyi, were also in attendance.

Businessmen and woman from companies such as Alstom, Total, Schneider, and the MEDEF listened to Baroness Nicholson speak about the huge opportunities on offer to enterprising firms willing to invest in Iraq.

The Baroness pointed out that the country’s economy was one of the most vibrant in the world, despite the current challenging situation in some regions. Growth was at nine per cent a year, and with the fourth-largest oil reserves in the world, the future was bright.

The Executive Chairman was delighted with the success of the event.

2014 France Visit - Picture 2

From left to right: Fareed Yasseen, Emma Nicholson, Thierry Courtaigne, Vice-President and Director-General of MEDEF International, Ambassador François Nicoullaud, President of Initiative France-Irak

“For some time we have been keen to expand the IBBC’s portfolio. Our members already include almost all of the biggest firms in the UK that do business in Iraq.  Following today’s event, we feel we have convinced many of France’s leading companies to follow suit.”

Baroness Nicholson added: “We are hopeful that the likes of Alstom and Total will now look seriously to join our organisation.  This can only make the IBBC stronger, and underline its position as the leading organisation for the region.”

Later, Mr Yaseem hosted an exclusive lunch at the Paris embassy, which was attended by the IBBC delegation, French business leaders, and the former French Minister of Foreign Affairs and founder of Doctors without Borders, Mr Bernard Kouchner.