- Combined Authority strengthens links with Korea’s second city and world’s 5th busiest port, Busan
- Also collaborating with K-Water – operator of world’s largest tidal power scheme
- Prospectus showcases city region’s investment opportunities and world-leading innovation to Korean audience
- Building on trade mission to South Korea.
Britain’s Ambassador to Korea has hailed the Liverpool City Region as a ‘standout example’ of how UK regional authorities can develop international trade links.
Colin Crooks, British Ambassador in Seoul, praised the city region for its efforts to strengthen relationships with one of the world’s most innovative countries – including translating the city region’s first ever Innovation Prospectus into Korean.
The move comes after the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority took part in a government-backed trade mission to Korea in May, which included visiting the country’s second largest city and largest port, Busan. This was on the back of the Liverpool City Region and Busan having been identified as one of just four potential UK-South Korea innovation twinning partnerships in a December 2021 report by the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS).
As part of the UK-Republic of Korea Innovation Twins Programme, Combined Authority Deputy Chief Executive Richard McGuckin and Martin Land, Director of the Mersey Tidal Power Programme, also visited the world’s largest tidal power plant at Sihwa, near Seoul.
Following the week-long visit, the Liverpool City Region has worked to strengthen ties with Busan Metropolitan City and with K-Water, operator of the Sihwa Tidal Power Plant.
This includes publishing a Korean version of the city region’s Innovation Prospectus – a move that is a UK first and is aimed at attracting new inward investment.
Liverpool City Region Mayor Steve Rotheram said:
“For as long as we have existed, people and businesses from the Liverpool City Region have been inspiring and changing the world. To put it simply – innovating and doing things our own way is in the very fabric of our DNA.
“While we have rightly earned our title as one of the UK’s leading science and technology hubs – I want to position our area to the forefront of global innovation and collaboration, creating a place that forward-thinking businesses from around the world look at as an attractive location to invest in.
“Korea shares that same scale of ambition – and potential – which could see our two areas form an incredible innovative partnership. The publication of our Innovation Prospectus in Korean is a statement of our intent to forge stronger ties with our friends in Busan and, hopefully, work together to build a brighter, more prosperous future for our two regions.”
Launched in April, the Prospectus showcases the Liverpool City Region’s world-leading specialisms in infection prevention and control, materials chemistry, and AI solutions plus its emerging strengths in net-zero and maritime technology. The document also highlights £12bn of investment opportunities and the city region’s ambition to invest 5% of local economic value in R&D a year – nearly twice the government’s target.
Since its publication, Liverpool City Region has been selected as one of only two UK locations for Innovate UK’s £15m Launchpad pilot programme aimed at driving innovation. On top of that, the city region has just agreed a landmark partnership with Innovate UK.
British Ambassador to the Republic of Korea, Colin Crooks, said:
“The Liverpool City Region continues to be a standout example of how the UK’s regional authorities can maximise the potential for international exchange, trade and investment through the development of strategic relationships.
“I very much welcome the production of a full Korean text of their ‘Innovation Prospectus’ as another significant step in this regard. The British Embassy in Seoul looks forward to continuing our support for the Liverpool City Region as it seeks to strengthen emerging innovation twinning links with Busan Metropolitan City, and associated opportunities with K-Water around tidal power development.”
The Innovation Twins Programme aims to help UK and South Korean cities with complementary strengths develop long-term research and innovation links, creating a pipeline of opportunities for bilateral trade and foreign direct investment (FDI). This will help both countries realise the potential of their highly innovative SME sectors.
The Korean visit included meetings in Seoul, Daejeon, Busan and Ulsan and was part of a wider programme of relationship building between Korean cities and the Liverpool City Region, Glasgow, Birmingham and Belfast.
The initiative is being coordinated by the Connected Places Catapult, is funded by the UK’s Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) through the Global Research & Innovation Programme, and supported by the British Embassy in Seoul.
The Korean version of the Innovation Prospectus is available at https://www.liverpoolcityregion-ca.gov.uk/what-we-do/innovation/