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Honorary British Consul for NC at LEDA’s Lunch N Learn on England

Michael Teden ESQ., OBE was welcomed as guest speaker to LEDA International Lunch N Learn Series featuring England. Michael is the Honorary British Consult for NC since July 1, 2001. He was appointed by Her Britannic Majesty’s Consul-General in Atlanta. He served as Chairman of the British American Business Council of NC from 1992-1997 and was subsequently recognized for his contribution to the further development of bi-lateral trade and investment by the British government. He received the Order of the British Empire presented to him on May 3, 2001 at Buckingham Palace by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

Michael has had extensive experience within the US domestic and international commercial insurance industry. He worked for ten years at Lloyd’s of London before starting up the US subsidiary of a Lloyd’s broking firm in Charlotte. He has represented all areas of the insurance and risk management and has traveled extensively both in the US and internationally. He has focused on business development within the corporate and investment banking divisions of the larger financial institutions. Michael is Chairman and Managing Director of Whitehall Advisory Group.

On April 28, 2003 Michael was awarded the NC’s highest civilian honor, the Order of the Long Leaf Pine. The award was presented by the Governor of NC, the Honorable Michael Easley. The Order recognizes contributions and service to the state of NC.

England’s economy is one of the largest in the world, with an average GDP per capita of £22,907. Usually regarded as a mixed market economy, it has adopted many free market principles, yet maintains an advanced social welfare infrastructure. The official currency in England is the pound sterling, whose ISO 4217 code is GBP. Taxation in England is quite competitive when compared to much of the rest of Europe – as of 2009 the basic rate of personal tax is 20% on taxable income up to £37,400, and 40% on any additional earnings above that amount.

The economy of England is the largest part of the UK’s economy, which has the 18th highest GDP PPP per capita in the world. England is a leader in the chemical and pharmaceutical sectors and in key technical industries, particularly aerospace, the arms industry, and the manufacturing side of the software industry. London, home to the London Stock Exchange, the United Kingdom’s main stock exchange and the largest in Europe, is England’s financial centre – 100 of Europe’s 500 largest corporations are based in London. London is the largest financial centre in Europe, and as of 2009 is also the largest in the world.

With over 51 million inhabitants, England is by far the most populous country of the United Kingdom, accounting for 84% of the combined total. England taken as a unit and measured against international states has the fourth largest population in the European Union and would be the 25th largest country by population in the world. With a density of 395 people per square kilometer, it would be the second most densely populated country in the European Union after Malta.

England is highly industrialized, but since the 1970s there has been a decline in traditional heavy and manufacturing industries, and an increasing emphasis on a more service industry oriented economy. Tourism has become a significant industry, attracting millions of visitors to England each year. The export part of the economy is dominated by pharmaceuticals, cars – although many English marques are now foreign-owned, such as Rolls-Royce, Lotus, Jaguar and Bentley – crude oil and petroleum from the English parts of North Sea oil along with Wytch Farm, aircraft engines and alcoholic beverages. Agriculture is intensive and highly mechanized, producing 60% of food needs with only 2% of the labor force. Two thirds of production is devoted to livestock, the other to arable crops.

A time for questions and answers followed with many participants wanting to know more.

Rhonda Hunter, Director of Operations at LEDA said “We provide the Lunch N Learns as a way of promoting a better understanding of our international companies locally and other companies abroad through the educational and informational aspects of experiencing and learning about their various homelands through them or others deeply steeped in their culture and economy through firsthand knowledge or study.” “We appreciate Michael Teden, Honorary British Consul for NC sharing about England with us today”.

This is the sixth in the series; other previously experienced were Canada, Brazil, Germany, Japan and Austria. Where will we go next?