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Conservatives promise help for green tech start-ups

David Cameron has revealed a set of measures that could see green technology companies get a helping hand from any future Tory government
Written by Jo Best, Contributor

Conservative leader David Cameron has today set out plans that could see green tech start-ups get a helping hand from any future Tory government.

In a speech today, Cameron revealed a series of measures designed to tackle the sluggish economy, including the creation of incubators for green technology companies.

The party has released a consultation on the green tech market, which aims to "unleash environmental entrepreneurship across Britain, by giving companies advice and services, including expert guidance on intellectual property protection, legal issues and drawing in venture capital with the aim of creating a new generation of world-beating start-ups to rival anything going on right now in Silicon Valley", Cameron said.

According to the Tory leader, the UK has just five percent of the green goods and services market, trailing the likes of France, Germany, Japan and the US.

"We've got to do better — a lot better," Cameron said.

The Conservatives also detailed plans to introduce a green index to trade the shares of companies doing business in the environmental sector from the UK and around the world.

"Our green tech incubators will help new green start-ups get off the ground and then the world's first environmental stock market will give companies access to the investment they need to flourish and grow," Cameron said.

According to recent research by Ernst and Young, as of 30 June, 2008, there were 48 private venture-capital backed green tech companies in the UK with a total of $426m (£290m) in VC money behind them.

Last year, cleantech made up around 11 percent of all VC investment worldwide, up from 1.6 percent in 2003.

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