Khan picks two

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has appointed two members of his top team, Jules Pipe as deputy mayor for planning, regeneration and skills, and Rajesh Agrawal who is charged with championing London’s interests following the EU referendum, and protecting jobs and growth while the negotiation process takes place.

Pipe

Jules Pipe CBE, Mayor of Hackney, will work on key priorities for the Mayor, including major regeneration projects across the capital, providing young people with skills for their future careers, and ensuring London’s infrastructure needs are delivered to benefit all Londoners. Jules will lead on the revision of the London Plan and work closely with James Murray, deputy mayor for housing and residential development, to tackle the city’s housing crisis.

Becoming the first directly elected mayor of Hackney in 2002, and serving as Chair of London Councils since June 2010 (both of which roles he will stand down from to become deputy Mayor of London). Pipe brings extensive experience of London governance and planning.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “Jules Pipe brings to City Hall extensive knowledge of the capital, and the key challenges it faces.

“He and I share a determination to ensure London’s prosperity is shared by all Londoners, and that we plan ahead to equip the city for its future economic, infrastructure, skills and housing needs. Jules will be a fantastic addition to my top team at a time when London needs a stronger voice more than ever before in championing its unique interests, following the fallout from the EU referendum result.”

Jules Pipe said: “I am passionate about London, and I am delighted to be working with Sadiq on his ambitious plans to build prosperity, whilst ensuring our city is affordable for all Londoners.

“It is vital we use all the levers of City Hall to pursue a vision for the capital that delivers all its key needs, including a much needed increase in housing, and that development is planned to provide the widest benefit. Young Londoners must be given the skills needed to access all the opportunities available to them in our great city.

“I will be keen to ensure that the London Plan in particular reflects these core priorities.”

Agrawal

Meanwhile Sadiq Khan has also appointed Rajesh Agrawal as his deputy mayor for business.

Sadiq Khan has tasked Rajesh Agrawal with championing London’s interests following the EU referendum, and protecting jobs and growth while the negotiation process takes place.

The Mayor is calling for Britain and London to remain part of the European single market, and for the capital to be granted more autonomy in order to safeguard its business interests. This includes greater powers over skills, infrastructure, housing and planning.

Rajesh Agrawal, a fintech entrepreneur and innovator, is the founder and CEO of Xendpay, an international money transfer service, and RationalFX, an online foreign exchange service – both of which have grown into globally successful businesses.

Born and brought up in Indore, India, Rajesh arrived in London in 2001, and grew a two-person enterprise working from one small office into a multi-million pound business based in London, with offices in Birmingham, France and Spain.

Sadiq Khan said: “I’ve pledged to be the most business-friendly Mayor that London has ever had, and it is now more vital than ever that we act robustly from City Hall to protect our economy from the current uncertainty.

“London must stay in the single market and be given more powers to ensure we can remain competitive, in order to attract the global enterprise that London’s prosperity relies on. Having arrived in London equipped with the ambition to succeed, Rajesh has created a multi-million pound business from scratch and knows first-hand the challenges that our business leaders face, and what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur. I know that Rajesh is the best person for the job of protecting jobs and growth in London as we deal with the fallout of the referendum.”

Rajesh Agrawal said: “Having run my own global businesses, I know how important it is that London remains welcoming to European and international trade. I stepped on a plane for the first time 15 years ago to make the journey to London, and found a city that welcomed me with open arms and didn’t make me feel like a stranger. This openness to talent and enterprise must not change as a result of the referendum.

“I share Sadiq’s belief that a thriving economy is critical to ensure that all Londoners can share in our great city’s future success. The Mayor and I are determined to build a coalition that ensures the needs of business and financial services are at the fore over the coming months of negotiations with the EU. My first priority will be to listen and engage with businesses, to hear their concerns and deliver reassurance.

“These are extraordinary times and with this comes clear opportunities to reshape our city’s business landscape. We must champion London’s business at home and abroad, whilst equipping our young people for success, tackling rising business and housing costs and securing critical future infrastructure investment.”

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