Manufacturers to get more support from UK government

The UK government has announced the latest winners from a fund to help rebuild British manufacturing prowess

Twenty supply chain projects from across the UK will benefit from a total of £67m of government investment, with £109m being invested in the same projects by industry.

Two of the projects set to benefit from more than £18m of this funding are to aimed at improving manufacturing and supply chain processes for drug production and biologic medical products.

London-based Process Systems Enterprise will be receiving a £12.2m grant towards a £20.4m project it is leading with Pfizer, GSK, Bristol-Myers Squibb, AstraZeneca, Perceptive Engineering, Britest, Cambridge Crystallographic Data Centre, University of Leeds, University of Cambridge, STFC and the University of Strathclyde. The project will develop new digital design and manufacturing processes for drug products; it will create up to 94 jobs and safeguard 729.

The Centre for Process Innovation will be receiving a grant of £6.2m as part of an £11.3m project it is leading with UCB Celltech, Lonza Biologics, Sphere Fluidics, Horizon Discovery and Alcyomics. The project will adopt leading edge technologies emerging from UK SMEs to improve the supply chain for biologic medical products. It will create up to 23 jobs and safeguard a further 174.

‘The UK is a world leader in pharmaceutical and medtech manufacturing, as well as research, and investing in life science manufacturing is a very important part of our life science strategy,' said Life Sciences Minister George Freeman. 'These two projects will create skilled jobs and help to ensure that the UK remains one of the best places in the world for 21st century medical innovation, which will have real benefits for countless patients across the country.’

Business Secretary Vince Cable added: ‘Although there is much to celebrate about British manufacturing, it is clear that our supplier base has been eroded during the last 30 years. Reversing this will boost exports and help to safeguard UK jobs. The benefits of stronger manufacturing supply chains will be felt across the whole economy: new cutting-edge technologies, a more highly skilled work force and improved productivity will boost growth and jobs across the country.’

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