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Local business leaders head to MIPIM for world's biggest property showcase

Wolverhampton | News | Published:

Business and civic leaders from the Black Country and Birmingham are set to make a big splash when they turn up at one of the world's largest property trade fairs on the French Riviera.

The aim is to bring home billions of pounds of investment to turn ambition building plans into reality.

Their flagship projects include the redevelopment of Birmingham Smithfield and the creation of the Black Country's High Value Manufacturing City – both schemes would be worth £1 billion to the local economy.

The Black Country and Greater Birmingham have joined forces in the region's biggest-ever events programme to showcase what they have to offer investors at the global property show MIPIM, which runs from Tuesday until Friday next week at Cannes.

Nearly 5,000 investors from around the world will be at the event, looking to put their money into property projects.

And the West Midlands, under the banner of 'Greater Birmingham' will have 32 speakers and 20 events, supported by 30 major local businesses, aiming to tempt those investors to put their money into Birmingham and the Black Country.

During the week they will be unveiling a string of major development proposals.

This will include the launch of Birmingham's Smithfield Masterplan. One of the country's largest city centre development opportunities covering 35 acres, the scheme is worth a combined £1 billion.

Located within the city centre Enterprise Zone, Birmingham Smithfield will present investors with the opportunity to be part of a transformational mixed-use development at the heart of Birmingham.

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Meanwhile, the Black Country will be laying out its vision of becoming the High Value Manufacturing City of the UK.

A team from Invest Black Country and the local enterprise partnership, along with Wolverhampton council's strategic director Tim Johnson, will be looking for backers to support a string of design, manufacturing and engineering opportunities available in the Black Country.

HVM City could add more than £1 billion to the economy, bring forward over 370 acres of land for advanced manufacturing and create over 25,000 jobs.

The Black Country team will also be looking for investors to support the regeneration of Wolverhampton city centre and to join companies like Jaguar Land Rover in the Black Country Enterprise Zone.

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They will be highlighting the area's transport links, the engineering skills of its local workforce and the 13,400 engineering and technology graduates coming out of the Midlands' 16 universities every year.

Birmingham will also be looking to build on its recent successes, with the Grand Central and Birmingham New Street Station redevelopment and its upcoming HS2 projects, as well as the UK Central development around Birmingham Airport and the arrival of HSBC at its new home, currently under construction in the city.

Councillor John Clancy, leader of Birmingham City Council, said: "Our biggest events programme to date at this year's MIPIM will ensure Greater Birmingham once again catches the attention of the global investment community.

"With development sites across the region to showcase, ranging from landmark high-speed rail stations at Birmingham Curzon and UK Central to the Black Country's successful Enterprise Zone, Greater Birmingham will promote capital investment opportunities for the property market's most important decision makers.

He added: "Central to this year's programme is the strong collaboration between the private and public sectors, and across local authority and local enterprise partnerships throughout Greater Birmingham. By continuing to work together, we can deliver the jobs and growth that are vital to the economic development of the region, and overall growth prospects of the UK."

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