Green opportunities

Business secretary, John Hutton, has called on UK manufacturers to take advantage of new opportunities in the green economy such as renewable energy and low-carbon technology


Business secretary, John Hutton, has called on UK manufacturers to take advantage of new opportunities in the green economy such as renewable energy and low-carbon technology.



According to Hutton, a renewed manufacturing strategy will aim to help British industry take advantage of opportunities presented by tackling climate change while ensuring that the UK is at the forefront of developing and manufacturing new green technologies.



UK manufacturing has a crucial role to play in helping us accelerate to a low carbon economy,’ said Hutton. ‘There are many new and exciting technologies available for the UK to take advantage of, including on and offshore wind power, LED lighting, fuel-cell powered vehicles, carbon capture and storage, biomass, microgeneration, wave and tidal technology.



‘In the UK, thousands of new ‘green collar’ jobs could be created by the potential in wind power alone – from around 8,000 now to more than 27,000 in 2020.



‘Global demand for wind energy generation is growing by 20 per cent each year and I want to help UK manufacturers see these opportunities and exploit the wealth of expertise already at their disposal.



‘Our refreshed strategy will ensure government is doing all it can to assist UK manufacturing compete globally and take advantage of exciting new markets.’



The UK is the sixth largest manufacturing country in the world. It represents 14 per cent of GDP, accounts for more than half of exports, three quarters of business R&D and directly supports 2.9 million jobs.



Hutton also unveiled plans for a new Ministerial Advisory Group on Manufacturing. The group, which will report to Stephen Timms, minister for competitiveness, will include the CBI, TUC and EEF, and will participate in renewing strategy. It replaces the Manufacturing Forum, set up in 2004, which has helped to steer manufacturing strategy over the past three years.