I have just returned from a reception held to host the Governor of Utah, Gary Herbert, at Dechert llp's spacious offices in Queen Victoria Street, EC4.
I learnt a few things about Utah that tells me it is a very business friendly and enjoyable place to work in, live in or visit.
Utah, together with Dakota and Texas, are the fastest growing states in the U.S, and of the three, Utah is the only one with an economy diversified in seven sectors (Dakota and Texas are mainly concentrated on Energy).
Financial Sector, Aerospace and Defense, Software, are big number producers for Utah, which has kept businesses taxation low for the last 15 years, and has an impressive GDP growth of 4 percent. It has five national parks, ski slopes, the famous church in Salt Lake City, places of historical interest.
Talking to Governor Herbert, I realized that he and his administration have allowed a pro-growth citizen-friendly philosophy that naturally creates growth. Activity and consumption create wealth and support a successful economy. There is something to emulate about the leadership and governance in Utah, I believe.
Governor Herbert mentioned he had recently visited Ramallah, so I asked him what were the three things they need there to create peace and economic growth. "Eighty five percent of the people in Ramallah want to live peacefully and get along with the rest of the world." Is there something the rest of the world community can do to help them? "Yes; investment and aid and trade". What else?
"Good leadership. A people need a leader like they need a king. But they don't need any king; they need a good king, a righteous king." The Guvnor and his delegation had talks with Mr Haddad there, who must be a good leader, representative of his people, for the visitors from Utah to engage in talks with him.
In a nation which has donkey carts for transport, and a small fridge is a prized possession, can one imagine what it would do to create a wherewithal to provide Gaza and the West Bank with fridges, cars (which are plentiful in the developed countries), and help with building their infrastructure, so life for the people there can improve? As people see such gestures of help and co-operation, their hearts will listen that they too are of the same family as the people of Isaac and Ishmael, of Israel and the twelve tribes of North Africa (which are the modern twelve rich and powerful kingdoms in the Middle East).
I imagine some good gesture for that region following on from the visit of these worthy men, who are the representatives of the spirit of Christ, of the Mormon Church (officially known as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints).