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Autumn Statement 2023 and the UK’s investment in technology

Submitted by Technojobs Team on Fri, 24/11/2023 - 09:28
Autumn Statement 2023 and the UK’s investment in technology

On Wednesday 22nd November 2023, the Chancellor of the Exchequer presented his Autumn Statement to Parliament and shared plans to propel the nation into a future defined by innovation and cutting-edge technology. In this article, we will discuss where the Chancellor has allocated significant resources towards strengthening science, innovation, and technology.

Investing in the technological landscape

In the Autumn Statement, the UK government shares its commitment to driving technological advancements, recognising the pivotal role technology currently plays in the nation's economic growth. The statement emphasises the importance of fostering a positive environment for innovation across various sectors, including healthcare, transport, telecoms, energy, defence sectors and more.

One of the main focuses within the Autumn Statement was the investment the country plans to make in science and innovation. The government has allocated funds to support research and development initiatives, with a focus on breakthrough technologies that have the potential to reshape industries. This commitment is expected to spur innovation, paving the way for the UK to become a global leader in technological advancements.

How does technology impact economic growth?

The government's plans for technology to be a catalyst for economic growth, by investing in research and development, the UK aims to create open opportunities for tech startups and established businesses alike. The goal is not only to stay ahead of global technological advancements but to actively lead in key sectors such as artificial intelligence, robotics, and sustainable technologies.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) Compute

The Chancellor has unveiled a £500 million investment in AI compute over two years, marking an expansion of the AI Research Resource. This initiative aims to grant leading UK scientists and AI researchers access to cutting-edge computing power essential for handling complex and time-consuming tasks. The investment is anticipated to facilitate groundbreaking discoveries in areas such as climate change understanding, drug development, and the optimization of AI applications for improving lives. Additionally, the initiative is set to benefit AI startups and small-medium enterprises (SMEs), fostering productivity, driving innovation, and positioning the UK as a global hub for AI startup creation. Find out more about how AI is impacting businesses.

Quantum Missions

The Chancellor has also introduced five Quantum Missions with the aim of strengthening the UK's global leadership in quantum technology. These missions establish clear milestones for inward investment and research in critical areas such as computing, healthcare, and navigation. Quantum technologies, utilising quantum mechanics, offer capabilities beyond traditional machines, with potential benefits including solving complex problems and advancing sensing, timing, imaging, and communications.

Supported by a £2.5 billion Quantum Strategy, the missions include:

By 2035, the UK aims to have accessible quantum computers capable of running 1 trillion operations, surpassing classical supercomputers in key economic sectors.

  • By 2035, the UK plans to deploy the world's most advanced quantum network, paving the way for the future quantum internet.
  • By 2030, every NHS Trust is expected to benefit from quantum sensing-enabled solutions, enhancing early diagnosis and treatment for those with chronic illnesses.
  • By 2030, quantum navigation systems, including clocks, will be implemented on aircraft, providing unparalleled accuracy independent of satellite signals.
  • By 2030, mobile, networked quantum sensors are anticipated to unlock new situational awareness capabilities across critical infrastructure in the transport, telecoms, energy, and defense sectors.

These missions, designed for long-term impact, aim to catalyse public and private sector activity and investment necessary for the UK to achieve ambitious goals in quantum technology.

Empowering businesses through technology

The government's focus on technology is not limited to research and development. The Autumn Statement outlines measures to empower businesses through technology adoption. Financial incentives and support programs are designed to encourage businesses of all sizes to embrace digital transformation, making them more competitive on a global scale.

Sustainable technology initiatives

In line with global efforts to combat climate change, the Autumn Statement allocates resources to support sustainable technology initiatives. This includes investments in clean energy technologies, eco-friendly manufacturing processes, and innovations that contribute to the UK's net-zero ambitions. The government envisions a future where technology is not only a driver of economic growth but also a force for positive environmental change.

Developing technology skills

The Autumn Statement includes initiatives to develop technology skills across the nation. Funding is directed towards education and training programs that equip individuals with the skills needed to succeed in a career in the tech industry. This includes supporting the National Academy which focuses on mathematical sciences with up to £6 million of seed funding over the next three years.

Making technology accessible to everyone

The government's commitment to technology innovation extends to ensuring that the benefits reach all corners of society. The Autumn Statement emphasises the importance of accessibility, with measures in place to bridge the digital divide. This includes initiatives to improve digital infrastructure in rural areas, ensuring that the advantages of technology are not limited to urban centres.

The Autumn Statement 2023 underpins the UK government's dedication to fostering technology innovation. Through substantial investments and a focus on sustainable technology and accessibility, the statement provides a glimpse into a future where the UK stands as a leader in technological progress.