"National Industrial Strategy must be a new government priority" - CEO Colin Sinclair


Sciontec CEO Colin Sinclair says a National Industrial Strategy must be a key priority for the new government.



It is essential that the new government delivers a robust National Industrial Strategy, as promised, with devolution at its heart.

This strategy should focus not only on the areas where as a country we have our greatest strengths, such as health and life sciences, advanced manufacturing technologies, robotics, creative and digital, but also on the vital cross cutting infrastructure that underpins these potentially high growth sectors and allows them to grow, such as skills, fibre and transport connectivity.

With LCR Connect our City Region is already a pioneer in high speed connectivity alongside the Hydrogen buses and new Merseyrail trains but there is still more that can be done with improving transport connectivity. The Liverpool and Manchester Railway and new Glider buses or ‘trackless trams’ – better connecting the Knowledge Quarter to the city centre and waterfront – must be priorities in Liverpool. 

Devolution must also extend beyond simply giving regions greater powers over decision-making. It must include the main funding streams from organisations such as UKRI or Innovate UK, to ensure that the funding of R&D also has a greater element of devolution.

Too often, regions are pitted against each other for funding of a specific project, meaning one loses out and invariably through that time consuming, expensive and wasteful process more investment is given to projects in the South. 

Instead, I would urge the next government to invest in multiple projects across the UK where regions work closely together and collaborate for the greater economic good. Something that is already happening in the key area of life sciences across the North West, through initiatives like iiCON. 

The government must also give new impetus to supporting scale-ups, as well as fostering start-ups. If we are to grow the economy we need to give startups and small businesses the confidence to take risks, after such a difficult time and so much uncertainty.

Overall, the Government needs to demonstrate that integrity is not lost to politics. Rebuilding trust, giving the markets renewed confidence and through devolution allowing the people who know their places best to regenerate their economies. A place based strategy, powered by Innovation Districts. Building aspirational housing, improving health outcomes and placing innovation at the heart of that much needed new National Industrial Strategy.”