The recently released HM Treasury's 2017 Autumn Budget allocates over £500m to a range of initiatives supporting technology. This confirms the government's quest to improve productivity and position the UK as a world leader in new technologies such as AI, immersive technology, driverless cars, life sciences, and FinTech.
At present, a new company is formed in the UK every hour, but Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond hopes to see a new startup formed every half hour. According to Hammond this innovation-driven economy shall create more highly-skilled and better-paid jobs in the long-term.
1. The budget allocation seeks to place the UK as a tech world leader
"The Budget sets out the government’s vision for an economy that is fit for the future and provides greater opportunities for the next generation. An economy driven by innovation that will see the UK becoming a world leader in new technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), immersive technology, driverless cars, life sciences, and FinTech. An economy that creates more highly-skilled and better-paid jobs, underpinned by increased investment in the skills and infrastructure needed for the future and a modern Industrial Strategy that shows how government can build an economy that works for everyone"
Read the full HM Treasury executive summary here
2. £500m to boost science and innovation with support for electric vehicles, robotics and AI
"In the Spring Budget Hammond revealed plans to invest £500m to boost science and innovation with support for electric vehicles, robotics and artificial intelligence.Today, Hammond pledged to “step up” support for driver-less cars, adding that electric vehicles need to be the focus first. He announced £400m for charging infrastructure and £140m for electric car projects"
Read the full FundStrategy article here
3. The budget offers an investment to train 8,000 computer science teachers
"Driverless cars, 5G and investment to train 8,000 computer science teachers to help bridge the UK’s gaping digital skills gap are all on the cards for this week’s Autumn Budget. Technology is expected to be one of the major benefactors from this year’s investment pot, as the government seeks to bolster the country’s workforce in the face of Brexit uncertainties"
Read the full inews article here
4. Measures were set out to catalyse investment into scaling companies and improving firms' access to long-term funding
"After last week’s announcement on £21m of funding to create Tech Nation to build a national network of digital excellence and more visas for people with exceptional tech skills, the Chancellor gave further evidence that the Government is firmly backing the UK digital tech sector and innovation and science-led industries.The Budget revealed new money for maths and computer science in schools and funding for new technologies including £75 million to take forward recommendations of the AI review. There was a commitment to invest in 5G and full fibre broadband and new money for digital skills training, as well as other measures to help bring more investors into the sector.
The Government’s response to the Patient Capital Review was also published, which set out measures to help catalyse investment into scaling companies and make sure the most innovative firms have access to long-term funding."
Read the full TechCity UK article here
5. Two new initiatives, Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation and Regulator's Pioneer Fund, seek to modernise regulation for the digital age
"The chancellor unveiled two initiatives seeking to modernise regulation for the digital age: a centre for data ethics and innovation, costing £9m, and a Regulators’ Pioneer Fund, costing £10m. Walker said: “In an economy that is characterised by rapid technological innovation, it is vital that our regulators are able to keep pace. We therefore welcome the [announcements]”
Read the full New Statesman article here
Click here for HM Treasury's full 2017 Autumn Budget overview