UK Government ‘withdraws’ long-awaited Industrial Strategy

11 Mar 2021

The Government's intent to deliver a modern Industrial Strategy to set out a long-term plan to boost the UK’s productivity, has been withdrawn.

The political u-turn to scrap the eagerly awaited document (first initiated in 2017) has been made under new Business Secretary, Rt Hon. Kwasi Kwarteng (appointed in January 2021), until a new approach is formalised.

The purpose of the strategy was to position the UK at the forefront of future industries and emerging sectors by tackling the four main challenges

The strategic intentions comprised:

  • to place the UK at the forefront of the artificial intelligence and data revolution
  • to maximise the advantages for UK industry from the global shift to clean growth
  • to become a world leader in the future of mobility – how people, goods and services move in the future
  • to harness the power of innovation to support an ageing society

Mr Kwarteng has also disbanded the Industrial Strategy Council - chaired by Andrew Haldane, Chief Economist at the Bank of England, and included (among others) former CEO of Siemens UK, Juergen Maier, which oversaw the industrial strategy.

Furthermore, the decision has been taken to disassemble the associated industrial strategy team within the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).