Kwasi Kwarteng – 2021 Statement on Innovation Loans

The statement made by Kwasi Kwarteng, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, in the House of Commons on 22 November 2021.

Innovation is central to tackling the largest challenges the world faces, from climate change to global pandemics. The UK must be in the vanguard of the response to these challenges. That is why the Government have placed innovation at the heart of our Plan for Growth including through our Innovation Strategy.

The UK has a long and illustrious history of world-leading innovation, from the industrial revolution to the vaccine development of the past year. Now we have left the EU, we can move even more quickly to respond to emerging challenges and global opportunities, and cement the UK’s position as a world leader in science, research and innovation. That is why the Government committed to public R&D spending reaching £22 billion in 2026-27. This represents the fastest ever sustained uplift in R&D funding, increasing R&D funding to £20 billion per annum by the end of the SR period, £5 billion more than 2021-22.

Following a successful extended pilot with businesses including those in clean growth tech, Innovate UK will deliver a new programme of £150 million in flexible, affordable and patient innovation loans over the next three years. Innovation loans will help SMEs to take their late-stage R&D, including in support of net zero, to commercial success so that they can grow and scale through innovation.