(PRWEB UK) 20 September 2011
Technology Strategy Board to support innovation and growth in UK’s marine industry
The government-backed Technology Strategy Board (http://www.innovateuk.org) is to invest in research and development to support innovation and growth in the UK’s marine industry, its Chief Executive announced today.
Welcoming the publication of the UK Marine Industries Growth Strategy, launched by Business and Enterprise Minister Mark Prisk at the Southampton Boat Show today, Iain Gray said that investing in technology and innovation is vital for the future success of the British marine industry.
“The ability to innovate is key to the UK’s future economic growth,” Iain Gray said. “The Technology Strategy Board helps businesses to move ideas and innovations more quickly along the path from concept to market, and the marine industry is an area where we see opportunities to work with businesses to stimulate innovation and economic growth, to the benefit of the UK.”
The Technology Strategy Board is currently funding a technology roadmap and assessing the UK’s capabilities across different sectors of the marine industry. These will help the Board to decide, in consultation with business, how to ensure that its future support for marine research and development creates the opportunity to maximise the economic growth of marine companies across the UK.
Through these studies, sixteen of the highest priority opportunities have currently been identified, taking into account both their attractiveness to the global and UK markets and their fit with UK capabilities. These range from engine technologies with reduced emissions and marine biofuels to the construction of offshore renewable energy assets and marine ICT.
“Through these studies we already have a better insight to the potential challenges facing the marine industry,” added Iain Gray. “We plan to open a competition for research and development grant funding in 2012, though we’ll wait until the road map and capability work is complete early next year before we decide exactly which sector of the industry we will support in this way.”
The UK Marine Industry Growth Strategy defines how industry, government and academia will collaborate to exploit global marine opportunities, to help grow both the marine industry and the wider economy. The UK marine industries currently employ nearly 90,000 people, generate over £10 billion in turnover and contribute nearly £3.5 billion GVA to the nation’s GDP.