BIS: The UK’s £9bn space sector is about to become even bigger after the Government recently pledged an extra £60m to Europe’s space programme, the Chancellor announced recently during a speech at the Royal Society.
Subject to the outcome of the high-level discussions at European Space Agency (ESA) Ministerial, the UK space sector expects significant returns from this further investment. Industry has already identified projects to the value of £1bn that should follow in train from this additional funding.
Defra: Environment Secretary Owen Paterson is spearheading the biggest ever food trade delegation to China to start filling a £1bn hole in the British economy. China is consuming significantly more Western-style milk, cheese, and yogurt, and Britain can help supply that demand.
The UK currently imports £1.2bn more dairy produce than it exports, meaning there is huge potential for growth at home & abroad. Mr Paterson has been promoting tea, desserts, beer, meat, and confectionery produced by British companies. A record number of British SMEs went to Shanghai to sell their produce to 30,000 importers at the giant Food and Hotel China exhibition.
As the first step towards developing more trade with China, Defra will share the insight into the Chinese market with other businesses in a dairy export summit in the New Year.
ESRC: Warwick & Aston Universities have been chosen to host a new Enterprise Research Centre that will help develop understanding of the factors affecting business investment, performance & growth. The centre launches on 1 January 2013
and will become a national & international focal point for research, knowledge & expertise on SMEs.
MO: RWE npower renewables, one of the UK's leading renewable energy developers and operators, has chosen the Met Office's VisualEyes™ for its 27 wind farms across the UK.
A web-based monitoring & alert solution, VisualEyes™ will monitor real-time & forecast weather conditions at the sites to ensure safe & efficient operations at each location. The availability of accurate data for real-time and forecast weather conditions enables RWE npower renewables to plan maintenance & repairs to ensure downtime is kept to a minimum, and in turn reduce maintenance costs - whilst ensuring the safety of staff and contractors on site.
DWP: The Post Office, Cassidian, Digidentity, Experian, Ingeus, Mydex, and Verizon are the successful providers chosen to design & deliver a secure online identity registration service for the Department for Work and Pensions.
The identity registration service will enable benefit claimants to choose who will validate their identity by automatically checking their authenticity with the provider before processing online benefit claims. As well as offering a safe & secure system, providers will be required to offer a simplified registration process, minimise the number of usernames & passwords a customer will need to remember and reduce the costs incurred across Government for the management of Identity Assurance.
The online Identity Assurance model will be incorporated into Universal Credit as it’s developed & rolled-out. Over time Identity Assurance will become available to all UK citizens who need to access online public services.
ScotGov: 10m chefs are set to cook with Scottish seafood following a landmark deal with the World Association of Chefs’ Societies (WACS). As a result of the agreement, Scottish salmon & langoustines will also be used exclusively by more than 100 world-class chefs in the 2012-14 Chefs Global Challenge, which includes regional competitions in locations such as Singapore, Italy, Las Vegas and Hong Kong.
Seafood Scotland, Scottish Quality Salmon and Scottish Salmon Producers’ Organisation - in partnership with Scottish Development International - have struck the deal, which will see only Scottish salmon & langoustines featured in the WACS global chef competitions over the next 2 years - culminating in the 2014 final in Norway.