Events > Business Opportunities in Germany for the Northern Powerhouse

Business Opportunities in Germany for the Northern Powerhouse

20/10/2020 11:00-12:15

Webex online


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Please note this is a practical event aimed at businesses interested in trading internationally or wanting to learn more about the service Department for International Trade provides.  

Join the Department for International Trade (DIT) North East and expert speakers from different areas of business including NRW.INVEST, the regional development agency and a German commercial law practice. This free webinar will explain the opportunities available, along with the legal and regulatory requirements to set up and operate in Germany.

Germany is the UK’s second biggest export market after the USA and the state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), is Germany’s most economically successful and populous state. NRW is Germany’s industrial and technology heartland adjacent to The Netherlands and Belgium. Key sectors in NRW include advanced engineering, chemicals, energy, ICT, digital and logistics. 160 million people live within 500 kms radius of the state capital, Düsseldorf. Join this free online seminar to learn more about exporting to and setting up in, NRW, Germany. 

The programme will also include a case study of a UK company. There will be the opportunity for Q&A at the end. Speakers are also offering one-to-one confidential telephone calls which will be arranged thereafter. Please submit any questions you may have via the registration form prior to the webinar taking place.

Cancelling your registration - Please be aware all cancelations should be made at least one week prior to the workshop taking place, where possible please ask another colleague to attend in your place and let us know who this will be. Thank you in advance for your kind co-operation.




Rafe Courage
British Consul-General, Düsseldorf
Rafe was appointed Her Majesty’s Consul-General in Dusseldorf in July 2017. His area of responsibility covers North-Rhine Westphalia, Hesse, Rhineland Palatinate and Saarland. Rafe and his team promote UK exports to Germany, German investment in the UK; and provide consular assistance to British Nationals. Rafe joined the Diplomatic Service in 1986. He has experience of working on a wide range of topics, including commercial diplomacy; communications; immigration; political and economical. Rafe has done a number of postings in Belgium, Pakistan, Turkey and the USA. This is his first posting in Germany.
Maria Dotsch
International Trade Adviser
The Department for International Trade
Maria Dotsch is an international trade and development specialist. She works with companies to develop their domestic and international strategy and achieve their business objectives. Maria accomplished a commercially led traineeship in import and export administration working for international retail and wholesale cooperations in Germany. Moving on she worked as a buyer in the procurement department overseeing the creation of new product ranges including retail, wholesale and distribution. She moved then into the field of business generation working as a Business Development Director for an American Management Consultancy based in London. With over 20 years previous professional experience in international trade she works now for the UK Government. In her capacity as International Trade Adviser for the Department of International Trade she helps companies with tailored export advise. As part of her job she organises trade missions on behalf of the UK Government and leads UK companies in global markets. Maria is fluent in German and English.
Andrew Harfoot
UK Representative
Andrew assists UK firms to set up and grow in NRW, Germany – see www.nrwinvest.com. Andrew helps companies in three specific ways: • Advice on establishing a legal entity in NRW, Germany – usually a GmbH • Advice on recruiting in NRW • A property search service for buildings or land, to rent or buy plus, of course, general advice on doing business in Germany. Andrew is an economic development specialist and marketing consultant. He prides himself on providing practical advice and guidance on market entry strategies for Germany. Previously he represented the State of Virginia, USA in the UK for fifteen years. Andrew is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing.
Daniela Oliel
Project Manager
Internationalisation HUB at the Business Metropole Ruhr.
Daniela Oliel is the Project Manager for the Internationalisation HUB at the Business Metropole Ruhr. She is the daughter of Russian immigrants, was born in Israel and has lived in Germany for more than 17 years. With a B.A in Economics and a rich background in Communications, Sales and Business development, Oliel has chosen to use both her professional experience and international background to consult companies on how to successfully venture into the German market. Oliel is based in Cologne, but focuses her consultancy work mainly on the northern Ruhr region of North Rhine – Westphalia, which will be explored in more detail throughout the course of her presentation.
Daniel Pot
Daniel Pott is a German lawyer and tax advisor. After university (LL.M. Taxation in 2004) he worked as a trainee for various authorities, legal and tax advisors in Germany and abroad in the field of corporate and tax law. Daniel Pott started his career at Ernst & Young in Düsseldorf (2007) where he gained in-depth practical experience in the field of tax structuring in national and international cases. Since joining SHWP (2010) he provides comprehensive advice on German tax law on the interface to corporate and inheritance law. In particular for foreign companies SHWP offers support in starting business activities in Germany and assists them in all relevant matters (foundation, financial and payroll accounting, tax advice, legal advice in corporate and labour law).
Julie Underwood
Executive Director of International Trade
North East England Chamber of Commerce

Julie is the Executive Director of International Trade for the North East England Chamber of Commerce and currently has responsibility for the international services the Chamber delivers. This includes export documentation, expert training and advice around all elements of exporting and a bespoke Global Membership for businesses trading overseas. Julie is also responsible for the Department for International Trade delivery services, which includes a team of International Trade Advisers, working with businesses across the North East.

Dagmar Wülknitz
Head of Unit UK, Ireland, France, Italy and the Nordic Countries, Dagmar has over 30 years of experience in assisting investors from all sectors of industry in establishing their foothold in the German State of North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany (NRW). Born in Düsseldorf, she has lived for most of her life in this region and knows all the key players in economic development, academia and the administration. Her clients benefit from her experience and know-how in the following way: Excellent networks in different sectors of industry Contacts with legal, accounting and HR professionals Contacts with clusters in various sectors of industry Information on sites and properties Consulting clients with their international growth strategies She is a marketing professional and studied at the universities of Cambridge, Herriot Watt, Grenoble (F) and Lausanne (CH). She speaks English, French, Swedish, Italian and Spanish.
11:00 - 11:00Webinar Host- Maria Dotsch, International Trade Adviser, Department for International Trade
11:00 - 11:05Introduction – Julie Underwood, Executive Director of International Trade - North East England Chamber of Commerce
11:05 - 11:10HM British Consul-General, Düsseldorf, Rafe Courage.
11:10 - 11:25Business Opportunities in Germany (NRW) – Ms Dagmar Wülknitz and Andrew Harfoot
11:25 - 11:35The Ruhr Region – Daniela Oliel- Project Manager, Business Metropole Ruhr
11:35 - 11:45Legal Considerations - Daniel Pott
11:50 - 12:00Case Studies
12:00 - 12:15Q&A

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