Comment: Science and Technology Committee Chair responds to Innovation Strategy
22 July 2021
The House of Commons Science and Technology Committee Chair has responded to the Government’s Innovation Strategy, published 22 July 2021.
The strategy outlines how the government will focus its efforts to support businesses and institutions, setting out plans in four areas: institutions and places, people, and missions and technologies, and ‘unleashing business’ (supporting businesses who want to innovate by ensuring effective access to investment).
Chair of the Science and Technology Committee, Rt Hon Greg Clark MP, said:
"I welcome the publication of today’s Innovation Strategy, which rightly underlines the importance of science and innovation to our security, wellbeing and prosperity now and in the future. However, I am concerned that although the document references the Government’s commitment to invest £22billion in R&D per year, there is no date attached to it.
The Government has previously been crystal clear that this level of investment will be achieved by the end of the Parliament in 2024/5. This was set out clearly in the 2020 Budget, the 2021 R&D Roadmap and by the Secretary of State in evidence to our Committee earlier this year. It would be a paradoxical and retrograde step if a new Innovation Strategy, designed to advance the UK’s status as a “science superpower” had downgraded the Government’s commitment to invest in science and innovation during this Parliament.
The Committee will seek urgent assurance from the Government that the commitment to £22 billion by 2024/5 remains. We will consider the Strategy in detail during the weeks ahead.”
Image: Parliamentary copyright