Government unveils ￡725million plan to tackle productivity puzzle and transform UK into world′s most innovative nation
- ?The measures are part of a new 'Industrial Strategy' from the Government
- ?There is ￡170m earmarked for building affordable homes that use less energy
- ?A ￡210m fund will be made available?for development of 'precision medicine'
The Government has unveiled a ￡725million plan to transform the UK into the world's most innovative nation by 2030.
The measures are part of a new 'Industrial Strategy', which sets out the Government's long-term vision on how to tackle the UK's well-documented poor productivity level compare to other advanced economies.
The relatively low level of average productivity among British workers is considered one of the main headwinds holding back wages and economic growth in the UK.
The government aims to transform the UK into the world's most innovative nation by 2030.
'Productivity' refers to the amount of a good or service a worker can create or provide for every additional unit of input, such as an hour of time worked for example.
The ￡725million includes ￡170million towards building houses that are more affordable and use less energy, and ￡210million to improve early diagnosis of illnesses and development of 'precision medicine' for patients.
The new money will go into a fund over the next three years, on top of a previously announced ￡1billion earmarked for development projects.
The Government said it will press ahead with a series of 'sector deals' covering life sciences, construction, artificial intelligence and automotive.
Ministers said these represent a 'new strategic and long-term partnership' with Government, backed by private sector co-investment.
The move aims to build on an announcement by the Prime Minister last week that the Government's ambition is to deliver a step change in the level of research and development (R&D) investment, bringing it from 1.7% of GDP to 2.4% by 2027.
There will also be an additional ￡406million investment in maths, digital and technical education, helping to address the shortage of science, technology, engineering and maths graduates, while the rate of the R&D tax credit will be increased to 12 per cent.
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.'
UK productivity growth is lagging other advanced nations badly at the moment.?
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.'
Alongside the launch of the White Paper, life sciences company MSD said it will open a 'state-of-the-art hub' in the UK to drive research into future treatments for patients.
Around 150 research roles will be created, and it is envisaged that the new site will accommodate hundreds of staff for the UK domestic market and other European clinical functions currently based in MSD's Hoddesdon offices in Hertfordshire.
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