SOLENT businesses will discuss Brexit and the new economic horizons at an annual conference.

While the UK debates its relationship with the European Union, hundreds of Solent business leaders will meet to discuss future economic opportunities.

The Solent Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) holds its annual conference, this year entitled Countdown to Brexit, at the Hilton Ageas in Hedge End on Tuesday, March 12.

Speakers will consider the technical and other business-based advancements happening across the Solent region, and how corporate resilience will be key in the future.

The conference will see around 250 business and public sector leaders come together.

The day will be hosted by BBC business editor Simon Jack, who will give his unique insight into reporting on Brexit and chair a Question Time style panel where delegates can pose their questions to the speakers.

Also set to talk is Aart Hille Ris Lambers, UK commercial director at DP World Southampton, the UK's most productive container terminal.

Delegates will also hear from Neil Garwood, managing director at Southampton Airport, Hannah Clipston, partner at law firm Irwin Mitchell, and Leigh Atkinson, local director at Metro Bank.

There will also be an update from Solent LEP's chairman Gary Jeffries on the organisation's work to develop the region's economic landscape and its vision for 2050.

Mr Jeffries said: "Businesses are key drivers of the economy here in the Solent and Brexit is undoubtedly the biggest topic on their lips at the moment.

"We're looking forward to discussing the opportunities and challenges our changing relationship with the EU may present for the Solent in particular, at what's set to be our most action-packed annual conference to date."

Solent LEP is encouraging local businesses to attend the event.

Entry is free but delegates must register to attend, as spaces are limited.

To register, visit

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