Government unveils £100m tech investment plan

Companies with good ideas in key areas could get a slice of the Government's multi-million pound pie

Science and innovation minister Lord Sainsbury today announced a £100m windfall for the high-tech sector as part of the next round of the government's technology programme, which has £320m to distribute to UK companies by 2008.

The latest round of funding is available for firms to take products from blueprint to saleable prototype. Whitehall has targeted stopping climate change and creating new technologies for the automotive and aerospace industries as ripe for funding.

The eight areas of the technology that the government will be sharing the £100m between will be the development of new materials bound for tough environments; 'direct writing', where materials can be put directly onto complex structures; biopharmaceutical processing; next generation laser technology; tech to help push sustainable energy; pollution-free businesses; validation of complex systems; micro- and nanotechnology.

Lord Sainsbury said investment in technology would keep the UK at the forefront of the world's economy.

Companies interested in applying can find more information here. The competition opens on 25 April and applications must be submitted before 13 June.