Top diplomats from across the world visited the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton last week to learn about the UK’s global leadership in marine and maritime science and technology, resulting in a flurry of interest in working with the NOC and UK marine companies.
The visit was organised by UKTI South East as an initiative in the margins of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s (FCO’s) Leadership Week to showcase what the South East has to offer, and was attended by Her Majesty’s Ambassadors, High Commissioners and Consul Generals from around the World. UKTI said that "This visit to the NOC was about promoting the strengths of UK industry, technologies and our science base to senior diplomats so that they can sell our competitive advantages to the world for both trade and investment.”
NOC Executive Director, Edward Hill commented, “As a globally focused institution, NOC was delighted to host and contribute to this visit. While it is of course too early to say exactly what this visit will bring, the interest in our science and technology capability and that of our commercial partners has been very encouraging”.
Following a welcome by Professor Hill, the visitors were taken on a tour of the Marine Robotics Innovation Centre and heard presentations by NOC industry partners MOST (AV) Ltd and ASV, and Stevens Marine Ltd authors of the Solent Marine and Maritime Report. NOC’s Marine Science Policy Advisor, Alan Evans and Associate Director Innovation and Enterprise, Kevin Forshaw also gave an overview of the NOC’s work in these areas.