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What does the new 2021 budget mean for me?

March 15, 2021

Natasha Bury
Science and Innovation Consultant

Each year, the chancellor’s report of the annual budget outlines the government’s plans for the economy, marking a critical moment in the business year to strategize for the year ahead. And this year, more than most, business-owners have been at the edge of their seats to learn of any new developments which may affect them.

The government outlined their plan to lay the foundations for a long-term post-Covid economic recovery driven by the private sector, spreading investment and opportunity throughout the UK, with the overall aim of driving innovation. Within the announcement, an array of measures targeting different sized companies were highlighted, including some potential new grant opportunities for innovative SMEs.

We have picked out the key details, so you don’t have to:

1. A £20 million fund UK-wide competition aimed at supporting the development of floating offshore wind demonstrators, in line with the government’s goal of generating enough electricity from offshore wind to power every UK home by 2030.

2. A £68 million fund UK-wide competition to champion the delivery of first-of-its-kind long-duration energy storage prototypes, that successfully reduce the cost of net zero by storing excess low carbon energy over longer time periods, than the current state of the art.

3. A £48 million fund underpinning a new biomass feedstocks programme in the UK, which aims to increase the production of green energy crops and forest products, that can be used as energy sources.

Further details about these programmes should be released soon, so keep your eyes peeled for fresh updates. Together with the recent announcement of the brand-new Advanced Research and Invention Agency (ARIA), which plans to support extremely high-risk ventures, this marks a very exciting time for the UK innovation landscape!

March 12, 2021
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