industry news Thursday 16 Apr 2020 @ 11:00 UK Drone Delivery Group releases plan to accelerate growth of UK drone industry

[London: 16 April 2020]: The UK Drone Delivery Group, the new drone industry initiative* established to provide guidance on the steps required for the UK to accelerate the growth of the UK drone industry, has today released its long-awaited ‘White Paper’ for public consultation.

The White Paper calls for the development of new testing grounds, which are expected to significantly transform the UK’s potential to achieve world-leading status in the fast-moving drone industry.

Robert Garbett, founder of the UK Drone Delivery Group, stated:

The release of this White Paper for public consultation represents a major milestone for the UK drone industry. The mass-participation drone testing programme that the White Paper calls for will significantly transform the UK’s capability to achieve world-leadership in this industry. 

“The recommendations in the White Paper highlight the practical measures necessary to enable full economic development of drones, including the testing of competing solutions to make Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) flying possible.”   

The UK Drone Delivery Group has already received widespread interest from many owners and operators of potential testing grounds and will soon embark on a series of pioneering projects to test the capabilities of drones across a range of sectors including parcel delivery for medicines and other supplies - agriculture and the emergency services. 

Robert Garbett added: 

“Facilitating a world leading UK commercial drone industry will bring immense benefits to UK plc, driving innovation, wealth creation and employment opportunities right across the economy. The pace of drone technology development around the world is accelerating, and the UK, if it moves quickly, can reap the full benefits of this technology, not just in the air, but also from drones developed to operate on land or water, underwater or in space. 

“The potential benefits are staggering, but we need to act now. We are keen to identify new testing grounds to be used for take-off and landing, ideally including airports and airfields, but also forests, remote coastal areas and ports, through to residential areas and other dense urban environments. 

“Industry is looking now to the Government to get behind this initiative, working with both public and private sector drone users to help create a world-beating UK industry that could play a huge role in underpinning our future economic prosperity.”  

The economic impact of drone technology is expected to be massive, with Barclays having predicted in November 2019 that the commercial drone market could grow tenfold from $4billion in 2018 to $40 billion by 2023 and creating cost savings of $100 billion.[1] 

It is anticipated that, following the consultation, the completed White Paper will be ready for adoption by the end of June 2020, following a three-month period of consultation and review. The draft White Paper can be found here] together with a form for comments.  Feedback is requested by 31 May 2020.    

Those interested in participating in the UK Drone Delivery Group’s drone testing ground initiative are asked to contact: https://www.dronedeliverygroup.org/join-the-group

For further information please contact:  

Melissa Carver/Gordon Cole-Schmidt  

dronemajorgroup@thecommunicationgroup.co.uk 

The Communication Group plc 

020 7630 1411 

 

*Notes to Editors: 

Drone Delivery Group  

Formed in November 2018, the Drone Delivery Group is a not for profit industry initiative involving over 300 senior UK drone industry members and a growing number of international observers. The aim of the Group is to arrive at a UK industry-supported solution to Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS), Vertical Take-off and Landing (VTOL) and UAS Traffic Management (UTM) that can then be presented to Government (DfT, BEIS and the CAA) as a recommended approach to building the necessary framework to enable the development of the industry and the evolution of UK airspace management for UAVs and hybrid drones that the Government can confidently support as a workable solution to enable safe and secure commercial drone flights to become a reality in UK skies. 

Robert Garbett 

Robert is founder of the UK Drone Delivery Group and founder of Drone Major Group Limited, the world’s first global drone consultancy dedicated to advising companies and organisations on what can be achieved through the use of autonomous and remotely controlled systems (drones) in their operations across all environments (surface, underwater, air and space). Robert is Chairman of the British Standards Institution (BSI) Committee responsible for the development of drone standards in the UK and leads the International Standards Organisation Working Group developing the standards for the operation of unmanned air systems (UAS), both passenger and non-passenger carrying. He is the only authority to be advising on standards in Britain, Europe and worldwide; a leading consultant within the global drone industry and an advocate on the potential of drone technology to transform businesses and economies.   

[1] https://www.ft.com/content/cbd0d81a-0d40-11ea-bb52-34c8d9dc6d84  accessed 24th Feb 2020

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