Building our Industrial Strategy Green Paper

About this consultation

The UK Government is consulting on its proposals for a modern Industrial Strategy as part of its post-Brexit plan. It intends that the Industrial Strategy will create the right conditions for new and growing enterprise to thrive and help young people to develop the skills needed for the high-paid, high-skilled jobs of the future. The stated objective of the Industrial Strategy is “…to improve living standards and economic growth by increasing productivity and driving growth across the whole country.“

Background

The UK Government identifies ‘10 pillars’ for driving the Industrial Strategy across the entire economy:

  1. Science, research and innovation
  2. Skills
  3. Infrastructure
  4. Business growth and investment
  5. Procurement
  6. Trade and investment
  7. Affordable energy and clean growth
  8. Sectoral policies
  9. Driving growth across the whole country
  10. Creating the right institutions to bring together sectors and places

Proposed changes

The UK Government explains that they are proposing these pillars because of evidence that they will drive growth. The Green Paper emphasises that improved productivity does not mean making people work harder – but helping them work smarter.

Consultation questions

We invite IOSH members to send us comments on the BEIS consultation questions (listed below) or any other comments to consultation@iosh.co.uk, to help inform an IOSH response, by 24 February 2017.

  1. Does this document identity the right areas of focus: extending our strengths; closing the gaps; and making the UK one of the most competitive places to start or grow a business?
  2. Are the ten pillars suggested the right ones to tackle low productivity and unbalanced growth? If not, which areas are missing?
  3. Are the right central government and local institutions in place to deliver an effective industrial strategy? If not, how should they be reformed? Are the types of measures to strengthen local institutions set out here and below the right ones?
  4. Are there important lessons we can learn from the industrial policies of other countries which are not reflected in these ten pillars?
  5. What should be the priority areas for science, research and innovation investment?
  6. Which challenge areas should the Industrial Challenge Strategy Fund focus on to drive maximum economic impact?
  7. What else can the UK do to create an environment that supports the commercialisation of ideas?
  8. How can we best support the next generation of research leaders and entrepreneurs?
  9. How can we best support research and innovation strengths in local areas?
  10. What more can we do to improve basic skills? How can we make a success of the new transition year? Should we change the way that those resitting basic qualifications study, to focus more on basic skills excellence?
  11. Do you agree with the different elements of the vision for the new technical education system set out here? Are there further lessons from other countries’ systems?
  12. How can we make the application process for further education colleges and apprenticeships clearer and simpler, drawing lessons from the higher education sector?
  13. What skills shortages do we have or expect to have, in particular sectors or local areas, and how can we link the skills needs of industry to skills provision by educational institutions in local areas?
  14. How can we enable and encourage people to retrain and upskill throughout their working lives, particularly in places where industries are changing or declining? Are there particular sectors where this could be appropriate?
  15. Are there further actions we could take to support private investment in infrastructure?
  16. How can local infrastructure needs be incorporated within national UK infrastructure policy most effectively?
  17. What further actions can we take to improve the performance of infrastructure towards international benchmarks? How can government work with industry to ensure we have the skills and supply chain needed to deliver strategic infrastructure in the UK?
  18. What are the most important causes of lower rates of fixed capital investment in the UK compared to other countries, and how can they be addressed?
  19. What are the most important factors which constrain quoted companies and fund managers from making longer term investment decisions, and how can we best address these factors?
  20. Given public sector investment already accounts for a large share of equity deals in some regions, how can we best catalyse uptake of equity capital outside the South East?
  21. How can we drive the adoption of new funding opportunities like crowdfunding across the country?
  22. What are the barriers faced by those businesses that have the potential to scale-up and achieve greater growth, and how can we address these barriers? Where are the outstanding examples of business networks for fast growing firms which we could learn from or spread?
  23. Are there further steps that the Government can take to support innovation through public procurement?
  24. What further steps can be taken to use public procurement to drive the industrial strategy in areas where government is the main client, such as healthcare and defence? Do we have the right institutions and policies in place in these sectors to exploit government’s purchasing power to drive economic growth?
  25. What can the Government do to improve our support for firms wanting to start exporting? What can the Government do to improve support for firms in increasing their exports?
  26. What can we learn from other countries to improve our support for inward investment and how we measure its success? Should we put more emphasis on measuring the impact of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) on growth?
  27. What are the most important steps the Government should take to limit energy costs over the long-term?
  28. How can we move towards a position in which energy is supplied by competitive markets without the requirement for on-going subsidy?
  29. How can the Government, business and researchers work together to develop the competitive opportunities from innovation in energy and our existing industrial strengths?
  30. How can the Government support businesses in realising cost savings through greater resource and energy efficiency?
  31. How can the Government and industry help sectors come together to identify the opportunities for a ‘sector deal’ to address – especially where industries are fragmented or not well defined?
  32. How can the Government ensure that ‘sector deals’ promote competition and incorporate the interests of new entrants?
  33. How can the Government and industry collaborate to enable growth in new sectors of the future that emerge around new technologies and new business models?
  34. Do you agree the principles set out above are the right ones? If not what is missing?
  35. What are the most important new approaches to raising skill levels in areas where they are lower? Where could investments in connectivity or innovation do most to help encourage growth across the country?
  36. Recognising the need for local initiative and leadership, how should we best work with local areas to create and strengthen key local institutions?
  37. What are the most important institutions which we need to upgrade or support to back growth in particular areas?
  38. Are there institutions missing in certain areas which we could help create or strengthen to support local growth?

IOSH members wishing to also respond individually to the BEIS Green Paper can do so by visiting here and responding by 17 April 2017.