The UK’s position as a leading player in the tech world is under threat unless the government takes a more proactive approach.
According to a new report from techUK, there needs to be a joined up and co-ordinated effort to cement the country’s tech infrastructure. And while the report states the UK is punching aboive its weight, without a clear plan that position is under threat.
The report points out, “UK has established itself as a leading tech economy, with a strong digital sector and globally leading research and start-up ecosystem. The tech sector is one of the UK’s modern economic success stories, with its contribution to the economy rising over 25% between 2010 and 2019, and now adding over £150 billion. This makes it one of the country’s most valuable economic assets and the leading tech sector in Europe.”
However, that success must not breed complacency. “There is now a fierce global race over the key technologies that will shape the future: from AI and Quantum to green technologies and semiconductors, competition between governments to attract talent, bring in investment and grow tech clusters is greater than ever,” techUK says. “If the next Government does not make the most of the UK’s strengths, there is a real risk of it falling behind.”
The report included the feedback from techUK membership, from small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to large international companies with significant investments in the UK.
Despite this wide range of stakeholders, the thinktank reports a clear and consistent message came back. “While the UK is a strong and dynamic tech market with ambitious plans to further our position as a technology leader, over recent years we have fallen off the pace and our delivery has faltered. Currently we are at risk of losing our position as a leader in tech and the benefits that this brings.”
In order to avoid that, techUK has set out its key objectives for government. They include Improving access to day-to-day digital services and cutting costs for both central and local Government as well as improving public services; plugging the digital skills gap to boost pay, opportunity and our national resilience; and restoring the UK’s reputation as a global leader in Open Data and rank among the five countries on the UN E-Government Index.
The full list of recommendations can be found here.
Meanwhile, London’s position as Europe’s leading city for start-ups has been confirmed by the latest The Global Startup Ecosystem Index from StartUp Blink, which finds that the UK and the capital, “Remain by far the strongest European representatives in both country and city rankings worldwide, forming a tier of their own, with scores way ahead of the rest of the continent. Sweden, France, Germany, and the Netherlands join the UK in the regional top 5 at the country level, the same as last year.”
Indeed, the rankings show that London, placed in 4th in the global rankings, now forms Europe’s first tier on its own, with a massive gap from all other European cities and more than double the score of Paris, ranked 2nd in Europe.
Clearly, the UK remains a vibrant place to grow a business, and that growth can be supported by working with the right partners. At Paul Beare Ltd, we’re here for all your needs, and you can contact us for help and support in a number of areas, from tax and payroll to accounting and banking.