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£23m up for grabs for `high-value manufacturing` projects

30 November, 2007

The UK manufacturing sector is to get a boost following a decision by the Technology Strategy Board to invest £23m in collaborative research and development projects in "high-value manufacturing".

The Board is inviting applications for financial support for new research and development manufacturing projects that both develop technologies for high-value products, and address the through-life supportability of these technologies.

"The fundamental challenge we are seeking to address is that of making all UK manufacturing high value," explains the Technology Strategy Board’s chief executive, Iain Gray. "Manufacturing is an important sector of the UK economy. While it represents about 15% of GDP, it accounts for over 50% of our exports. High-value manufacturing in the UK has a bright future, but only by being competitive in the world’s open and unregulated markets."

The projects, which can last for two to three years, can range from small, focused basic research projects, aimed at establishing technical feasibility, through to applied research and experimental development projects.

The Board wants to encourage projects that can demonstrate benefits to a number of business sectors, and ideally should include at least one partner with defined end-user needs

Applicants must register their intention to apply for funding by 11 January, and the closing date for applications will be 14 February.

º  The TSB and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council are investing a further £12m into industry-led collaborative r&d projects aimed at developing materials technologies for energy applications.

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