UK industrial strategy focuses on tech innovation

Technical innovation is the focus of the UK government’s industrial strategy. The strategy outlines support of R&D in the UK as well as an attempt to encourage technological firms to boost the economy.

Technological innovation: UK industrial strategy
Business leaders have welcomed the government’s new Industrial Strategy White Paper, which aims at making the UK the world’s most innovative nation by 2030.

Industrial coincides with major investment in UK

The government launched its white paper, which promises an extra £725 million of funding to “transform” industries and improve productivity, came on the same day as two pharmaceutical giants – America’s Merck, known as MSD in Europe, and Germany’s Qiagen – announced they were opening new biotech research facilities in Britain.The industrial strategy white paper outlines the government’s plans to support more research and development, to encourage firms to embrace new technology and boost the economy.Plans in the white paper include new partnerships between government, academia and business to boost life sciences, artificial intelligence, automotive, construction sectors.

Life sciences and tech innovations

The £725 million for the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, which comes on top of £1 billion announced in April to support innovation in robotics and battery technology, will be directed at the construction and life sciences sectors. The strategy paper also confirmed the plan in last’s Budget for a rise in tax credits for R&D to 12 per cent.Prime Minister Theresa May said, “Our modern Industrial Strategy will shape a stronger and fairer economy for decades to come. It will help create the conditions where successful businesses can emerge and grow, and support these businesses in seizing the big opportunities of our time, such as artificial intelligence and big data, whilst also making sure our young people have the skills to take on the high-paid, high-skilled jobs this creates.“As we leave the European Union and forge a new path for ourselves, we need to focus on building a better future for our country and all the people who live in it. With the Budget last week, and our Industrial Strategy in the years ahead, we will build a Britain fit for the future.”Business Secretary Greg Clark added, “Any serious strategy should address the weaknesses that stop us achieving our potential, as well as our strengths, and this Industrial Strategy does that.“Britain’s productivity performance has not been good enough, and is holding back our earning power as a country.“So this Industrial Strategy deliberately strengthens the five foundations of productivity: ideas, people, infrastructure, business environment and places.”
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CBI backs government plan

Carolyn Fairbairn, director-general of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), said, “Nine in ten firms see a modern Industrial Strategy as vital to improving living standards in the face of Brexit uncertainty and a sombre economic outlook.“This announcement shows the government has its eye firmly on the horizon, not just the next few yards. We welcome the recognition that success will require urgent action in partnership with business. This is the route to raising living standards in every corner of the country.“The hard work starts now. Today’s announcement must be the beginning of a strategic race, not a tactical sprint. And it needs to last. This is a time for consistency and determination, not perpetual change with the political winds. The creation of an independent council with teeth to monitor progress will help this.“The CBI urges the government to continue on this road, moving fast from strategy to action.Two important tests of success will be that all regions and nations have successful industrial strategies, and that it is supported and not harmed by Brexit. There must be no missed turns on the path to UK 2030.”

Industrial strategy as a foundation

Adam Marshall, director-general of the British Chambers of Commerce, said, “Chambers of Commerce have been working actively with Government to develop the Industrial Strategy, and we are pleased that the concerns and ideas of business communities across the country have been listened to.”Terry Scuoler, chief executive of the manufacturers’ organisation EEF, said, “The White Paper acts as a good foundation for a new partnership with industry where government and business can ensure consistency in policy thinking and implementation to ensure the UK is a world leader in these new technologies.”For related news and features, visit our Enterprise section. Look out for the launch of 2018's Relocate Awards, entries open in January.Relocate’s new Global Mobility Toolkit provides free information, practical advice and support for HR, global mobility managers and global teams operating overseas.Global Mobility Toolkit download factsheets resource centreAccess hundreds of global services and suppliers in our Online DirectoryClick to get to the Relocate Global Online Directory

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