International Business and Diplomatic Exchange

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The International Business and Diplomatic Exchange (IBDE) is a London-based not-for-profit, non-political membership organization dedicated to promoting international trade and investment flows, financial and professional services, energy, aerospace, manufacturing, healthcare, technology, innovation, and telecommunication industries. IBDE champions economic, commercial, and trade diplomacy, bridging the gap between business and governments to facilitate global cooperation and economic growth.


Founded over 14 years ago, IBDE has established itself as a key player in the realm of international business and diplomatic relations. The organization provides an independent, accessible platform for debate and exchanges of views to help inform international trade and investment policy and decision-making. IBDE's activities are designed to address the risks to business, including political risks, and the political aspects of business risk, thereby helping to shape policies that support global economic stability and growth.

Mission and Objectives[edit]

IBDE's mission is to support international businesses and diplomatic missions in identifying key trade and investment opportunities while debating regulatory and political issues impacting global markets. The organization achieves this through a variety of high-profile events, including investment forums, round-tables, workshops, conferences, seminars, and networking opportunities.

Leadership and Governance[edit]

Leadership Council[edit]

The Leadership Council is IBDE’s most senior and influential member forum. Chaired by Sir Roger Carr, the Council comprises over 50 senior business leaders, ambassadors, academic experts, and policymakers. The Council plays a crucial role in steering IBDE's strategic direction and ensuring the organization meets its objectives.

Economic and Commercial Diplomacy Advisory Group (ECDAG)[edit]

Chaired by Virginia Murray, Minister Counsellor for Economic Affairs at the Embassy of the United States of America in the UK, the ECDAG brings together heads of economic, trade, and commercial affairs of diplomatic missions, senior civil servants, and corporate directors. The advisory group supports the Executive and the Board in policy formulation and strategic activities. Key Activities and Achievements

Awards and Recognition[edit]

In 2019, IBDE won the first award presented to an organization for its Outstanding Contribution to Economic Diplomacy, voted for by the international diplomatic community. This accolade underscores IBDE's significant impact on fostering international economic cooperation.

International Business Festival[edit]

Between 2013 and 2016, IBDE was the Official International Delivery Partner of the International Business Festival, a major initiative launched by Prime Minister David Cameron and funded by HM Treasury. The festival hosted numerous business events and attracted delegates from around the world, including high-profile attendees such as Nobel Laureates, global business leaders, senior government ministers, and Her Majesty The Queen.

Brexit Debate[edit]

From June 2015 to June 2019, IBDE played a pivotal role in the Brexit debate, hosting over 40 seminars to explore the various viewpoints and consequences of Brexit. These seminars attracted leading representatives from politics, business, academia, and civil society, providing a comprehensive platform for dialogue on the post-EU referendum policy landscape.

Response to Covid-19[edit]

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, IBDE adapted its operations to engage with a broader audience beyond London. The organization facilitated high-level forums to discuss the economic and business response to the pandemic, demonstrating its value as a platform for fostering international cooperation during crises.

Strategic Partners[edit]

IBDE has consistently received excellent feedback from its strategic partners, including the City of London, European Commission, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, UK Department for Business and Trade, major corporations, diplomatic missions, and leading academic institutions.

Themes for Policy Priorities[edit]

IBDE's work program for 2024 focuses on several key themes and policy priorities, including: Enhancing public-private cooperation to address global challenges Promoting sustainable economic growth and development Facilitating international trade and investment Addressing regulatory and political issues impacting global markets

Key People[edit]