The Technology Strategy Board yesterday opened the first of the UK’s Technology and Innovation Centres, which the government hopes will stimulate manufacturing in the UK.
The first centre will specialise in high value manufacturing, and will form part of a £140 million government investment to help reduce risk for new and established manufacturing businesses in the UK, as well as attracting international business to the UK market.
The new centre will bring together seven UK institutions specialising in manufacturing excellence to better support the industry, including centres at Strathclyde, Sheffield, Warwick, Bristol and Manchester Universities, as well as sites in Coventry, Wilton and Sedgefield.
It is hoped that by combining the expertise from these centres, the Technology and Innovation centre will have the facilities to support a number of key industries, including pharmaceuticals, automotive and aerospace.
A representative from the Centre for Process Innovation, Wilton commented: “This investment is excellent news for CPI and demonstrates the UK’s commitment to inspiring new innovation.
“It aids the on-going development of CPI’s world class technology platforms in sustainable processing, printable electronics and high temperature processing, which enables British companies to benefit from and commercialise the results of leading research.”
The government hopes to establish at least six Technology and Innovation Centres by April 2013 to commercialise business led research and innovation to help UK manufacturing become more competitive on a world stage.
Chief executive of the Technology Strategy Board added: “The future of manufacturing in the UK needs to be high value, delivering strong financial performance, strategic importance and positive social impact.
“The UK has some of the best manufacturing businesses in the world, the industry accounts for 12 percent of GDP, around half of exports and in 2010 employed 2.5 million people in the UK. The new centre will help UK businesses stay at the leading edge of manufacturing technology and create and protect jobs long into the future.”