Government bangs the drum for UK IT

The government has launched a marketing strategy aimed at promoting the UK’s IT expertise overseas.

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The government has launched a marketing strategy aimed at promoting the UK’s IT expertise overseas.

The strategy – now out for consultation - will focus on key IT industry sub sectors and technologies where the UK is seen as having a competitive advantage and on the markets that offer the greatest opportunities.

It will be overseen by a strategy board made up of industry and government representatives.

Trade minister Lord Digby Jones, former head of the CBI business leaders’ organisation, said more than a million UK jobs depended on the success of the IT sector which generates more than 6% of GDP.

“Its importance to our economy is unquestionable,” he added. “It is no coincidence that many ICT firms have their European HQ as well as their research and development operation based here.”

A highly skilled UK workforce and the government’s R&D tax credit regime were “huge incentives” for choosing the UK, Jones said.

Mike Short, vice-president of telecommunications firm 02 and chair of a government advisory group on IT, said: “This is a strategy for the whole industry, not just parts of it, and the more people who take part in the consultation the better. The ICT industry will really benefit from having a strategy tailored to its needs.”

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