Business leaders in charge of some of Europe’s largest firms have today called on the government to embrace the “industries of tomorrow” in its upcoming industrial strategy, which is expected to be kicked off in a consultation early next week.
The Prince of Wales’ Corporate Leaders Group (CLG), which counts leading European business including Sky, EDF, Unilever and Tesco among its members, have launched a discussion paper arguing the government should ensure its industrial strategy promotes a “modern, prosperous, inclusive, and zero carbon economy”.
To achieve this, it should focus on four key trends, the paper argues: a move to a sharing economy, supporting growing demand for new digital products, encouraging more industrial reuse and recycling strategies, and continuing the transformation of the UK’s energy system.
This would help boost regional development, drive economic growth, improve productivity and promote a more sustainable economy for the UK, the CLG argues.
“The world is changing: new technologies and innovation have the potential to redefine business and industry as we know it,” Jill Duggan, director of the CLG, said in a statement. “With Brexit, the UK has the chance to reset policy and not be left behind. It is essential that our new industrial strategy is clear, ambitious and targeted enough to deliver a modern, prosperous, inclusive, and zero carbon economy.”
In recent months the government has suggested its highly trailed industrial strategy will include more support for low-carbon industries infrastructure projects. At the Conservative party conference in October, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Greg Clark said the green economy represents a “massive opportunity” for the UK’s industrial strategy.
“Our global leadership in combating climate change, which we will maintain and take forward, presents us with a massive opportunity to enjoy industrial success,” he told delegates, hinting that low-carbon technologies such as offshore wind may be in line for further support.